Grandmasters Mitkov and Liang Win '17 Midwest Class
- Written by Bill Feldman Bill Feldman
Although neither could achieve a perfect score, Grandmasters Nikola Mitkov and Awonder Liang (of Wisconsin) posted the top 4.5 scores at the 2017 Midwest Class completed October 8 in Wheeling.
Mitkov's draw came in the fourth round against GM Priyadharshan Kannappan (Missouri) while Liang's came in the second round against long-time rival David Peng. Liang and Peng have grown up appearing on the US Top 100 lists for the same age group, frequently one-two.
IM Eric Rosen and Jacob Furfine entered the final round tied with Mitkov and Liang in the 3.5/4 score group, but lost their respective matches to the GM's.
Mitkov and Liang split $3000 with Mitkov getting a $100 bonus for posting the higher tiebreak.
Aydin Turgut and Wisconsin's Anthony Parker split $1200 for high score among Under 2400's in the Premier section (3.5).
64 competed in the top of seven sections in the Continental Chess Association event.
Tom Bareket posted a perfect 5-for-5 score in the 1700-2099 section, defeating Mark Hamilton in the final round to close out the championship. Cameron Heino overcame a second-round loss to Nicholas Ladan to take clear second place with 4.0/5. Bareket claimed $1400 while Heino earned $700.
Eight players each earned $75 for their 3.5 tallies, tying for third place.
Toby Yang and William Blackman -- with a 332 rating point difference -- both posted 4.5's in the 1500-1899 section, splitting $2100. David Sye and Max Heinrich tied for 3rd place (and 4th), each earning $300 for their 4.0 tallies.
A three-way tie in the 1300-1699 section included Stephen Horvath, Ken Kotowsky and Harry Heller, all with 4.5's. Horvath and Heller drew head-to-head in the final round. Each of the three enjoyed $800 paydays.
The 1100-1499 section also featured a three-way tie for first at 4.5. Rohit Guha, Patrick McCluskey and Hunter Reed (MI) split $2200.
Alex Griffin of Minnesota was the clear winner of the Under 1300 section, claiming $1000 for first place. Subodh Mehendale and Leon Rapoport split $800 for second and third place with their 4.0's.
In the Under 1100 section, Highland Park High School's Sam Harris posted a perfect 5.0 score to claim the $500 first place prize and trophy, while Marek Gronski won $300 with a 4.5 result. Five players tied for third place with 4.0's.
52 played multiple rounds in the U1100 section. Randhir Gandhi of Utah was the top previously unrated player in the section with a 3.0 score, winning a trophy.
Harris (the U1100 winner) and Ramya Elangovan split $800 for winning the Mixed Doubles competition with 8.5, a half point better than the 8.0 posted by Athena and Kyros Wu. Emma Wang and Ankush Mookly scored 7.0 to claim third place.