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State Scholastic Champions Nominated for National Tournaments

April 18, 2015 - The Alabama Chess Federation is pleased to nominate Jonathan Rasberry (left) to represent Alabama at the prestigious Denker Tournament of High School Champions. The invitational tournament consists of nominees from each state and is held in conjunction with the US Open Championship. This year's tournament will be in Phoenix, AZ from August 1-4. Jonathan is a senior from Birmingham. He qualified for the nomination by becoming the 2015 Alabama Scholastic Chess Co-champion. He narrowly defeated co-champion Vikhram Balagee in a tie-break Armegeddon game after they split two blitz tie-break games. Jonathan's tournament also included a exciting win over Alabama State Champion and three-time scholastic champion, Stephen Adams. Jonathan will work with International Master David Ross to prepare for this year's competition.

Logan Mercer has been nominated for the 2015 Barber Tournament of K-8 Champions. Logan tied Last year's Barber representative, Arden Markin, but won two tie-break blitz games to take the first place trophy. Logan will be working with National Chess Coach Charles Smith of Magic City Chess U as he prepares for the Barber.

Alabama will be sending its first representative to the National Girls Invitational Tournament. Nine-year old Rochelle Wu is ACF's 2015 NGIT nominee. In 2014 Rochelle tied for third at the World Youth Chess Championships in the Girls under 8 division. Her coach for the NGIT will be Grandmaster Miroslav Miljkovic.

The Alabama Chess Federation will contribute $1,000 to each player to defray travel expense and training expense.

Featured Tournaments

April 25, 2015 - Tuscaloosa, AL - The Black Warrior Chess Challenge includes an open section available to players with ratings of 1500+ and a reserve section for rated players under 1600. Flyer

April 25, 2015 - Tuscaloosa, AL - The Tuscaloosa Scholastic Chess Championship features rated and non-rated sections for grades k-3, k-6, and k-12. Flyer

May 2, 2015 - Headland, AL - The Tony Edmondson Classic features three G/60 sections to be played at the Headland Chess Club. Flyer

May 16, 2015 - Birmingham, AL - Sun Valley Elementary is hosting the 7th annual Summer Scholastic Chess Tournament. The tournament is open to students of all schools. Flyer

Click here to see other tournaments.

Alabama State Scholastic Chess Championships

March 16, 2015 - On a beautiful Spring weekend in Mobile, close to 200 players participated in each of the two days of the Alabama State Scholastic Championship. For many of the players the March 14-15 weekend was also the start of a Spring Break from school. This may have contributed to the good turnout. A number of new players and teams stepped up to lay claim to the title of Alabama scholastic champion.

Individual Championships

In the open section, former Jr. High co-champion Jonathan Rasberry held off an intense kingside attack by current state champion (and scholastic champion in 2013 and 2014) Stephen W. Adams to score a perfect 4.0. The perfect score was matched by Vikhram Balagee, who held Elementary school championship titles in 2009 and 2010. Then in a tie-break competition, the two played, a two-game, head-to-head blitz games. Each player won one game. Then in a final Armageddon game Jonathan won to take home the first place trophy. Both Jonathan and Vikhram share the 2015 Alabama scholastic co-champion title.

In the K-8 section, 8th-grader Logan Mercer collected his fifth scholastic state championship title. This year he shares it with 6th-grader Arden Markin after both tied with 3.5 / 4.0. Logan won the 2-game blitz tie-breaker to qualify for the first place prize. This is the fourth year Arden has won or shared a state championship title.

Mohak Agarwalla and Benjamin Kennedy are the Elementary (k-6) section champions. Rochelle Wu scored the only perfect 5.0 in the k-3 Primary section to win that title.

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  Individual Champions
2015 2014 20132012
High School (K-12)Jonathan Rasberry, Vikhram Balagee Stephen W. Adams Stephen W. Adams Kelly Chen, Stephen W. Adams
Jr. High (K-8)Logan Mercer, Arden Markin Arden Markin, Samson Sands Alexander Lay, Ethan Hugh SmithLeeAngelo Groves, Jonathan Rasberry, Joshua Anders, J. Welsey Brown
ElementaryMohak Agarwalla, Benjamin Kennedy David Xu Luo Arden Markin Logan Mercer
Elementary (under 600 rating)Chip Shell William Bao, Zachary Snow -
PrimaryRochelle Wu Siddharth Doppalapudi, Sarvagna Velidandla James Hongjie ShiArden Markin

Tournament Photos and Individual Championship Crosstables.

Team Championships

The scholastic team championships feature competitions of school teams and club teams. The table below shows this year's winners along side past team champions.

  Grades
2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
OpenSchool Bayside Academy; Club: Chess Kids NationSchool: Bayside Academy, UMS-Wright A; Club: CaesarChess School: Huntsville High; Club: ChessKidsNation School:Bayside Academy (tiebreak), Indian Springs; Club: ChessKidsNation ChessKidsNation Indian Springs School (Pelham)
Jr. HighDiscovery Middle School, Pizitz Middle School; Club: Chess Kids Nation School: Bumpus Middle School; Club: Chess Kids NationSchool: Huntsville Middle School; Club: ChessKidsNation School: W.J. Christian; Club: CaesarChess W.J. Christian (Birmingham) ChessKids Nation
ElementarySchool: Rainbow Elementary; Club: Chess Kids NationSchool: Rainbow Elementary; Club: Madison City League, Freedom Chess Academy School: Vestavia Central; Club: ChessKidsNation School: Vestavia Central, Randolph; Club: ChessKidsNation The Knight School Huntsville Chess Club
PrimarySchool: Vestavia East; Club: Freedom Chess Academy, Chess Kids Nation School: Vestavia East; Club: Magic City USchool: Liberty Park; Club: ChessKidsNation School: Vestavia East Elementary; Club: Magic City U ChessKidsNation, The Knight School ChessKidsNation

In a side competition, Bayside Academy's B-team won a junior varsity contest against three other teams.
Check out AL.com's coverage and photos of the tournament.

Alabama State Chess Championship

Stephen Adams is the 2014 Alabama State Chess Champion

September 29, 2014 - Tuscaloosa -Tennessee's International Master Ronald Burnett (below right) won the first place cash prize for the Championship section with a perfect 5.0/5.0.

Stephen W. Adams (above left) of Birmingham took second place (4.0/5.0) and was the top Alabama competitor. Stephen has won the state scholastic championship title for the last two years. At this tournament he accomplished the rare feat finishing ahead of Alabama's top adult players for the title of 2014 Alabama State Chess Champion. Kirk Petty of Montevallo finished third with 3.5 points.

In the under 1800 section, Devon Puckett (TN) finished in first place with 4.5/5.0. Four players tied for second with 4.0 points to share the title of 2014 Alabama Reserve Champions. They are Brian McCormick(AL), Nathan Hayes(GA), Christopher Trees(AL), and Sijing Wu(AL). More.