GM Aghasaryan & Kudrin Win Coast to Coast Opens

On the weekend of August 12th-14th, Continental Chess Association held two different weekend swisses, one on each coast.

On the West Coast, the Pacific Coast Open was held in the Los Angeles suburb of Ontario, California at the Ontario Airport Hotel.  The tournament drew 234 players in six sections.  There were 3 GMs, four IMs, one WGM, two WIMs, and five FMs in the 44 player Open section. GM Robert Aghasaryan was not the top seeded GM and was seeded behind several of the IMs, but he dominated the tournament finishing a point ahead of the field with a score of 5 ½ – ½. His only draw was in the last round versus IM John Daniel Bryant.  Enroute to his victory he defeated              FM William Duckworth and WGM Atousa Pourkashiyan.  Here is his round five win over Duckworth.

Tying for second place with 4 ½ – 1 ½ were IM Bryant, GM Erico Sevillano, IM Phillip Wang and FM Duckworth,  Each received $1000 except for Duckworth who earned $1200 for clear first Under 2300.

The major upset of the tournament was in round one when 12 year old Anthony Ge defeated GM Sevillano.   Here is that game,

Sevillano did bounce back though winning the rest of his games until a last round draw with IM Wang.  Here is Sevilano’s win versus Siddharth Banik,

The section winners were:

Under 2100

Wan Kim & Alejandro Ruiz 5-1 $1500

Under 1900

Gabriella Kay 6-0, $2000

Under 1700

Philip Leung & Leonard De Leon III, 5-1 $1350

Under 1500

Shawn Baker & Miles Zhou 5-1, $950

Under 1250

Sean Franco 5 ½ – ½ $800

Mixed Doubles

Cindy Zhang & Wan Kim, 10-2, $500 each

Blitz Tournament

Leo Creger V, 7-1 $135

NTD Steve Immitt directed the event assisted by Randy Hough and Scott Hunt.

On the East Coast there was also a 6 round event.  The Continental Open was held at a resort, the Host Hotel at Cedar Lake in Surbridge, MA.  The $30,000 prize fund attracted 271 players in seven sections. The open section featured four GMs and five FMs among the 33 players.  The event had a clear winner – GM Sergey Kudrin scored 5 points to win $3000 plus the $200 first place bonus. Kudrin drew with GMs Alexander Stripunsky and Alexander Ivanov. Here is Kudrin’s round one versus Life Master Oscar Maldonado.

There was a three way tie for second between GMs Stripunkiy & Michael Rohde and NM Carrissa Yip.  Rohde and Stripunsky each won $1100 and Yip won $1400 for clear first Under 2300.   Stripunskiy had he toughest pairings.  He faced all three of the other GMs.  He drew with Rohde and Kudrin and defeated Ivanov in the last round. Stripunky also drew with Yip.  Rohde drew with Stripunsky, but lost to Ivanov. He defeated four NMs including this win over Brandon Wu.

Yip had a slightly unusual path to the winner’s circle. She lost in round one to an expert and then score 4 ½ out of the remaining 5 including her draw with Stripunsky.  Here is her round two win versus Life Master Oscar Maldonado.

Most of the time, we focus on the open section. However, here is a miniature from the Under 2100 section.

The section winners were:

Under 2100

Mateos G Sahakian, Anthony Andreevich Levin & Michael Chen 5-1 $1167.67

Under 1900

Michael Cole, 5 ½ – ½ , $2000

Under 1700

Mark Neale, 5-1, $2000

Under 1500

Blaise Loya 5 ½ – ½ $1400

Under 1300

Surya Vamsi Pulukuri & Kian Thompson 5 -1, $1050

Under 1000

Jane Stripunsky, 5 ½ – ½ $800

Mixed Doubles

Jane Stripunsky & GM Alexander Stripunsky 10-2, $400 each

Melodie Loya and Blaise Loya 10-2, $400 each

Blitz Tournament

Mika Brattain, 7 ½ – ½ $170

Bill Goichberg directed for CCA assisted by Bob Messenger.

Full details including many games can be seen at

Previous Continental Chess tournaments can be found at the Continental Chess website at


  1. For the record, the Oscar Maldonado-Carissa Yip game from the 46th Continental Open in Sturbridge, MA was 40 moves long. Here are the last 5 moves of the round 2 game: 36. Rxd6 Rfxd6 37. Bxc5 Rd2 38. Rc1 Re2 39. f6+ Kf7 40. b4 Rdd2 0-1 The complete game was presented on the TV program “Chess Chat,” produced by members of the Wachusett Chess Club at Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts for Fitchburg Access Television (FATV). The game can be viewed at Video On Demand at

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