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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, September 9, 2010

Ostrovsky, 14, named state chess champ

By Peter Henner

The 132nd New York State chess championship was contested at the Albany Marriot over Labor Day weekend. One-hundred-and-ninety-nine chess players from around the state, including 29 local players from the Capital District, competed for cash prizes in the six-round affair.

The Open section featured two International Grand Masters, three International Masters, and three FIDE (Fédération International des Échecs) Masters out of a total of 29 players. The internationally titled players played intense fighting chess; there were no “Grand Master draws” where very strong players agree to quick draws, rather than risk losing a game.

In the last round, Joel Benjamin, a former United States champion who had 4 1/2 points, was playing Grand Master Paragua who had previously lost to IM Esserman.  In a hard-fought game, Benjamin had to settle for a draw, and a total score of 5-1. This enabled Esserman, who had previously drawn two games (including a game against Benjamin) to tie Benjamin for first place by winning his last-round game.

Since neither Benjamin nor Esserman are New York State residents, the title of New York State Champion was won by third-place finisher, 14-year-old Alexander Ostrovsky, probably the youngest person to win the title. He had a great tournament, drawing GM Paragua, beating a FIDE Master, and losing only to GM Benjamin in a very hard-fought game to finish with 4 1/2 - 1 1/2. 

Although Ostrovsky had a great tournament, he needed some luck in the first round in his game against me. Rated only 1903, I had a slight edge on move 34 when Ostrovsky blundered a piece, which should have cost him the game.  However, I did not see the blunder and, four moves later, blundered away my advantage to eventually lose in the end game. (See problem below.) 

Long-time local player Art Alowitz tied for first and second place, and received a prize of $600 in the Under-1600 section. 

Glen Perry, who has recently moved to this area and, as many Albany Chess Club members can attest, was very underrated at 1668, gained more than 100 rating points in scoring 5-1, while capturing third place in the Under-1800 section.

Chuck Eson, a local player, has posted video footage of the tournament in the Gaming section of Youtube. 

Here’s a full list of local players and results:


Open: Deepak Aaron 3.5-2.5,  Steven Taylor 2.5-3.5, Peter Henner 2.5-3.5, David Connors 2-4


Under 2200: Patrick Chi 3.5-2.5, Phil Sells 3-3, Lee Battes 1.5-4.5


Under 2000: Alan Lecours 4-2, Michael Mockler 3.5-2.5, John Phillips 3.5-2.5, Kenneth Evans 3.5-2.5, John Barnes 2.5-3.5, John Lawless 2.5-3.5, Robert Rotter 2-4, Donald Dederick 1-5


Under 1800: Glen Perry 5-1, Carlos Varela 4-2, Sylvester Canty 3-3, Ray Alguire 2.53.5, Elihue Hill 2-4,  Max Kuperman .5-5.5


Under 1600: Art Alowitz 5-1, Zubin Mukerjee 4-2,  Dilip Aaron 3.5-2.5, Matthew Clough 3-3,  Lew Millenbach 2-4, Max Kuperman 2-4


Under 1300: Charles Eson 2-4

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