Close Calls at Conclusion of 2022 National High School Blitz Tournament

As the first day closed on the 2022 National High School (K-12) Championship, the first winners of the weekend were declared with the conclusion of the Bughouse and Blitz tournaments.

The 2022 National High School Blitz tournament boasted a field of 196 and included titled players, and 2022 Bughouse co-champs, FM Nico Chasin and IM Alexander Costello, as well as a number of competitors making their first USCF-rated blitz appearance.

At the starting of clocks, the pieces were moving fast and furious, as captured by our staff in the hall.

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The 2022 High School Blitz champion is IM Anthony He, an 11th grader, reigning Washington State champion, and highest rated competitor in the K-12. He finished the Blitz event with a near-perfect score of 11/12, edging out Wisconsin 10th-grader Hersh Singh on tiebreaks. Anthony came away with 10 wins, and a set of draws against 9th-grader Alexander Rutten.

2022 NHS Blitz Champ IM Anthony He
IM Anthony He was crowned the 2022 National High School Blitz champion with a final score of 11/12. Photo: Caroline King

Anthony is also the youngest FIDE Master and International Master in Washington State’s history, achieving the FM title four days after turning 12 in 2017, and the IM title in Sept. 2021 at the age of 16 years and 28 weeks.

Our staff was able to capture Anthony's decisive final game on Board 1, playing black against Chasin.

12th-grader IM Alexander Costello took third place with a score of 10½/12, with a single Round 6 draw keeping him out of contention for the top spot. Thursday’s Bughouse winners Nico Chasin, Leonardo Liu, and Daniel Levkov finished in the top 12.

Our on-site photographer Caroline King caught some of the drama and personalities in the playing hall.

The top 12 finishers, ordered by tiebreaks are:

  1. IM Anthony He (11/12)
  2. Hersh Singh (11/12)
  3. IM Alexander Costello (10½ /12)
  4. Asish Panda (10½/12)
  5. Harry Le (10/12)
  6. Avi Kaplan (10/12)
  7. FM Nico Chasin (9½/12)
  8. Alexander Rutten (9½/12)
  9. Leonardo Liu (9½/12)
  10. Maxwell Barnes (9/12)
  11. Christian Carrasco (9/12)
  12. Daniel Levkov (9/12)

The top five teams, ordered by tiebreaks are:

  1. Columbia Grammar & Prep; New York, NY
  2. Whitney Young High School; Chicago, IL
  3. Mathematics and Science Academy; Brownsville, TX
  4. Thomas Jefferson High School; Alexandria, VA
  5. Lakeside School; Seattle, WA

Awards will be presented to the individual Blitz winners, team Blitz winners, and Bughouse winners prior to Rounds 3, 4, and 5 on Saturday.

Although the preliminary victories were spread out among the top-rated players, the event’s true landscape will come into view at 1 p.m. CT today when the clocks start for Round 1 of the K-12 Championship. Anything can happen and we’ll be following all the action and providing regular updates here at Chess Life Online and on the US Chess Twitter account. Follow and share your photos and experiences at #HSChessChamps.

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