MetroWest Chess Club - Stanley Crowe Memorial
November   2, 9, 16, 23, 30 and December 7 19
99

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Tournament Commentary
Wednesday, December 31, 2008    05:28 PM
written by Larry Eldridge

Commentary will usually be posted to this page late Wednesday or Thursday night.

Round 6 - December 7, 1999  

Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov completed his sweep by defeating John Curdo in the last round for a perfect 6-0 score, wrapping up the $600 first prize and -- more important for him -- the Grand Prix points that went to the tournament victor.  Ivanov earned his top placing the hard way, with victories over all his main rivals, including Igor Foygel, Chris Chase, and Ed Epp. 

Foygel defeated Chase on Board Two in the final round to complete a fine 5-1 tournament (losing only to Ivanov), thus taking clear second place and claiming the 1999 MetroWest Chess Club Championship as the highest-finishing club member. 

While these results were pretty much expected, the top performance in terms of ratings was turned in by Epp. Seeded No. 9 at 2079, Epp lost only to Ivanov, had a half-point bye, and defeated Curdo (2383), Geoff Polizoti (2147) and Derek Slater (2142) en route to a 4.5-1.5 result and clear third place. This result also produced an apparent gain of 50-or so rating points in Dr. Epp's drive to regain the master's rating he held years ago.

Slater and Paul Mishkin shared fourth place with scores of 4.0.

The U1800 Section wound up in a three-way tie among Bob Harvey, Jamie Millman, and Franklin Herman at 5.0 each. Harvey went into the last round in the lead, but was held to a draw by Walt Champion. Meanwhile, both Millman and Herman won their final games to pull into the tie for top honors.  Champion wound up a half-point back in clear fourth place at 4.5. 

Young Sherif Khater (1453),who makes a habit of these things, pulled off the biggest upset of the final round by defeating Al Ward (1805). Earlier in the tournament, Khater had beaten Larry Eldridge (1840) for an even bigger form reversal. But the top upset for the tournament overall belonged to 10-year-old Stevie Wagner (833) over John Niarhos (1271). 

Upsets of 200 points or more over the entire event

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   4  438 WAGNER, Steve (3.0)               833 1271 NIARHOS, John
  2   4  387 KHATER, Sherif (3.0)             1453 1840 ELDRIDGE, Larry
  3   6  352 KHATER, Sherif (3.0)             1453 1805 WARD, Alfred G
  4   4  304 EPP,Edward (4.5)                 2079 2383 CURDO, John A
  5   3  301 DELAMAZA,Michael (4.0)           1321 1622 SIMONIAN,Stephan
  6   4  298 REYNOLDS,Scott (2.0)             1544 1842 MICHAEL, William G
  7   3  297 KHATER, Ali (2.5)                1543 1840 ELDRIDGE, Larry
  8   2  294 SHAPIRO,Izak B (2.0)              977 1271 NIARHOS, John
  9   4  287 KHATER, Ali (2.5)                1543 1830 PRATT, Larry
 10   2  225 STENGREVICS,John (4.0)           1447 1672 LEWIS, Brian A
Upsets for Round 6
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   6  352 KHATER, Sherif (3.0)             1453 1805 WARD, Alfred G
  2   6  167 ABBOT, Ames (3.0)                1675 1842 MICHAEL, William G
  3   6  166 KONING, Menno G (2.0)            1500 1666 ALARIE, Donna
  4   6   70 MISHKIN, Paul A (4.0)            1901 1971 CHAMBERLAIN,John
  5   6   68 EPP,Edward (4.5)                 2079 2147 POLIZOTI,Geoffrey
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   6  153 ISAACSON,Randi (3.0)             1170 1323 KRYCKA,James A
  2   6   66 MILLMAN, Jamie (5.0)             1553 1619 KAPRIELIAN,Mark
  3   6   66 HERMAN,Franklin B (5.0)          1502 1568 ABU,Gatumba

Round 5 - November 30, 1999  

Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov is already assured of at least a share of top

 honors as he heads into the last round a full point ahead of his closest pursuer, and needs only a draw with the white pieces against John Curdo to nail down clear first place. 

Ivanov raised his record to 5-0 with a win over Ed Epp in Round 5, while Igor Foygel defeated Rob Huntington to remain one point behind at 4-1. Tied for third with 3.5 are Chris Chase, Curdo, and Epp. 

Since Curdo is the only one of these top players not to have met Ivanov yet, he gets the honor in Round 6. Then it's Foygel vs. Chase on Board 2 and Epp vs. Geoff Polizoti on Board 3 in the other "money games."

In addition to the cash prizes and Grand Prix points, the 1999 club championship is at stake in this tournament, and will go to the highest finishing club member.

In the U1800 Section, Robert Harvey, after reeling off four straight wins, played to a draw with Mark Kaprielian on Board One in Round 5, thereby maintaining his half-point lead at 4.5. Bunched behind him are five players with 4.0 each -- Walt Champion, Kaprielian, Gatumba Abu, Jamie Millman, and Franklin Herman.

These results set up a knock-down, drag-out final round battle for the top spot and other high placings, with Harvey squaring off against Champion on Board One, Millman and Kaprielian on Board 2, and Herman and Abu on Board 3.  Harvey, of course, has his fate in his own hands, since a win would clinch clear first place. Should he draw or lose, however, there are all sorts of possibilities.

There were no upsets of consequence in Round 5, the biggest being Millman's 119-point form reversal over Brian Lewis.

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   5   59 PRATT, Larry (2.5)               1830 1889 SUZMAN, Timmy
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   5  119 MILLMAN, Jamie (4.0)             1553 1672 LEWIS, Brian A
  2   5   79 DELAMAZA,Michael (3.5)           1321 1400 SCHAEFER,Alan
  3   5   59 HERMAN,Franklin B (4.0)          1502 1561 WRAY, David M

Round 4 - November 23, 1999  

Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov ground down Chris Chase in a difficult end game in Round 4 to remain the only player with a perfect score (4-0) going into the fifth and next-to-last round.

Ed Epp, who took a half-point bye in Round 3, returned to action with a surprising victory (with the black p;ieces) over John Curdo on Board 2, thus lifting himself into the No. 2 spot with 3.5 points. This win earns Epp the honor of playing Ivanov on Board One in Round 5., while Igor Foygel and Rob Huntington, the only players with 3.0 scores, will face off on Board 2.

In the U1800 Section, Robert Harvey leads the way with a perfect 4.0 score, followed by three players (Walt Champion, Mark Kaprielian, and Gatumba Abu) with 3.5 each.

As for upsets. the biggest one in Round 4 was Sherif Khater (1453) over Larry Eldridge (1840) -- a difference of 387 points. Next was Epp's 304-point surprise over Curdo, while others of note were Scott Reynolds over Bill Michael (298 points), Ali Khater over Larry Pratt (287), Huntington over Jim Della Selva (190), and Ed Astrachan over Timmy Suzman (76). 

In the U1800 Section, fourth-grader Stevie Wagner knocked off John Niarhos for the biggest upset of the entire round (438 points), while Randi Isaacson scored a 113-point surprise over Sanjajan Manivannan. 

One more player "jumped in" in Round 4, making a total of 70 entries.

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   4  387 KHATER, Sherif (2.0)             1453 1840 ELDRIDGE, Larry
  2   4  304 EPP,Edward (3.5)                 2079 2383 CURDO, John A
  3   4  298 REYNOLDS,Scott (2.0)             1544 1842 MICHAEL, William G
  4   4  287 KHATER, Ali (2.5)                1543 1830 PRATT, Larry
  5   4  190 HUNTINGTON, Robert (3.0)         1893 2083 DELLA -SELVA, James
  6   4   76 ASTRACHAN, Edward (2.5)          1813 1889 SUZMAN, Timmy
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   4  438 WAGNER, Steve (2.0)               833 1271 NIARHOS, John
  2   4  113 ISAACSON,Randi (2.0)             1170 1283 MANIVANNAN,Sanjajan

Round 3 - November 16, 1999  

Thanks to a combination of upset draws and byes, things got hot and heavy early in this year's tournament. Indeed, after three rounds Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov already had the only perfect score, with three players chasing him at 2.5.

Ivanov defeated No. 2 seed Igor Foygel in a key head-to-head showdown in Round 3 to claim the undisputed top spot. Meanwhile Chris Chase and John Curdo, both of whom were held to surprise draws in the first round, rebounded to win their next two games and stay within striking distance a half-point off the pace. Tied with them at that spot was Ed Epp, who won his first two games and then had a half-point bye in Round 3. 

The result of all this is that Ivanov gets the black pieces against Chase in a huge Board One matchup in Round 4, while Curdo has white against Epp on Board 2.

In the U1800 section, Walt Champion, Mark Kaprielian, and Robert Harvey are tied for top honors with perfect 3-0 scores. Champion meets Kaprieilian on Board One in Round 4, while Harvey plays James Williams on Board 2.

As for upsets, the biggest one in Rond 3 occurred in the U1800 Section, Michael Delamaza (1321) deeating Stephan Simonian (1622). In the open section, Ali Khater (1543) upset Larry Eldridge (1840), and Scott Reynolds (1544) topped Donna Alarie (1666).

The total entries at this point are 25 in the Open Section and 44 in the U1800, for a total of 69.

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   3  297 KHATER, Ali (1.5)                1543 1840 ELDRIDGE, Larry
  2   3  122 REYNOLDS,Scott (1.0)             1544 1666 ALARIE, Donna
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   3  301 DELAMAZA,Michael (2.0)           1321 1622 SIMONIAN,Stephan

Round 2 - November 9, 1999  

Everything went pretty much according to form on the top boards, setting up an early showdown between GM 

Alexander Ivanov and SM Igor Foygel next week.  These two plus experts Geoff Polizoti and Ed Epp have the only perfect scores after two rounds, but Epp is taking a third-round bye, accounting for Ivanov-Foygel top board pairing in Round 3. 

Meanwhile third-seeded Chris Chase and No. 4 John Curdo, both of whom were nicked for draws in Round One, rebounded with victories to remain a half-point off the lead. Larry Pratt, author of the upset draw against Chase, also won his Round 2 game to join the 1.5 point group. So Chase plays Polizoti and Curdo takes on Pratt on the other top boards in Round 3. 

A couple of upsets spiced the top boards in the U1800 section, which is now down to eight players with perfect scores: Walt Champion, Mark Kaprielian, Robert Harvey, David Wray, Jamie Millman, Franklin Herman, John Stengrevics, and James Williams.

Stengrevics (rated 1447) pulled the biggest surprise among the leaders, knocking off top-seeded Brian Lewis (1672), while Williams (1441) defeated No. 4 seed Stephan Simonian (1622). 

The biggest upset overall was by young Izak Shapiro (977) over John Niarhos (1271), while Ames Abbot (1675) scored over Larry Eldridge (1840) in the Open Section. 

A total of 24 players competed in the Open Section and 44 in the U1800, adding up to 68 overall -- a good turnout, though a few short of the record. 
 

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   2  165 ABBOT, Ames (1.0)                1675 1840 ELDRIDGE, Larry
  2   2   71 PRATT, Larry (1.5)               1830 1901 MISHKIN, Paul A
  3   2   63 EPP,Edward (2.0)                 2079 2142 SLATER, Derek C
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
  1   2  294 SHAPIRO,Izak B (1.0)              977 1271 NIARHOS, John
  2   2  225 STENGREVICS,John (2.0)           1447 1672 LEWIS, Brian A
  3   2  181 WILLIAMS,James (2.0)             1441 1622 SIMONIAN,Stephan

Round 1 - November 2, 1999            Revised on Tuesday 11-09-99

Return visits by Grandmaster Alexander Ivanov and New England Open Champion Chris Chase plus a pair of surprise draws spiced action in Round One of the annual Stanley Crowe Memorial. 

Ivanov, one of the nation's top players, struggled in his only previous appearance here last spring, eventually dropping out and finishing out of the money. He started off on the right foot this time, however, defeating Bill Michael in his opening test.

Chase, a strong near-senior master (2390) with many major local, state, and regional titles, is 0-for-2 in his previous MCC tournaments -- falling victim to a combination of tough pairing luck and a couple of last-round upsets. Two years ago in this same tournament he led 4-0 going into the last round but lost with the black pieces to John Curdo and finished second by a half-point. Earlier in 1997 in his only other appearance here, he was tied for first place going into the last round, but again got the black pieces and lost to Joel Johnson to drop into a third-place tie. This time, though, he started out on a different tack, being held to a draw by Larry Pratt (1830). Indeed, Pratt actually appeared to have the better of it in a "good N vs. bad B" middle game before losing his way. Then Chase may have had some winning end-game chances, but eventually acquiesced to a draw.

It should be noted that, in the final position, Chase had a significant time advantage in a position which was obviously drawn on the board. Showing the sportsmanship that is sadly absent in so many players at his level, he refused to try to run his opponent out of time and instead took the draw which was clearly the proper result for this game.

The other surprise draw occurred on Board 4, where Jeff Penta (1823) played John Curdo (2383) to a standstill. 

Everything else in the Open Section went according to form, starting with Igor Foygel's quick victory over Larry Eldridge on Board 2 and including wins by experts Geoff Polizoti, Derek Slater, Jerzy Weyman, Jim Della Selva and Ed Epp, and A-players John Chamberlain and Rob Huntington.

The U1800 Section, meanwhile, went entirely according to form, with all of the higher-rated players emerging victorious, creating a 19-way tie for first place!

 

MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- Open                                Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
					None
MCC Stanley Crowe Memorial -- U1800                               Upsets, Page 1
Pl  Rd  Diff              Winner              Rate Rate       Opponent
					None