Cherepanov started the tournament as the 3rd seed behind Defending Champion GM Alonso Zapata and Senior Master Deepak Aaron. He played both of his chief rivals, defeating Aaron and drawing with Zapata.
The Master section was extremely strong. There were 21 players, and one third were GMs!
In round 7, Sevian faced second seed GM Vladmir Belous on board 1. Sevian had the black pieces and trailed Belous, who led the tournament by half a point. Sevian won the game, taking over clear 1st, and he never relinquished the lead!
This year marked the 50th Anniversary of the New York State Scholastic Championship, and, as befits such a milestone, this year’s attendance shattered previous records.
The 62-player Open section was quite strong, which should be no surprise given the St Louis location. Many Webster students played as well as students from some of the other top college programs around the country.
Andretta now was leading the tournament with a 2700+ GM and an FM all with 2 ½ out of 3! On Sunday morning, Andretta was on board one against Perez – an over 500 point rating difference that you hardly ever see in a class tournament.
GM Li had white against Gorovets and needed the win in order to tie for 1st. He brought home the full point.
Having directed tournaments for over 35 years, there is a tendency to believe I’ve seen just about everything that could occur at a tournament. Every once in a while I am proved wrong!
The Southwest Class Championship ended in a 5 way tie for 1st and produced one GM and three IM norms where the average age was 22 years old!
Smith and Petesch met in round 4 with Smith in clear 1st at 3-0, leading the field by half point.
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