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MCCL youngsters victorious in chess challenge

MADISON – You can’t blame the adults for trying.

All of the adult chess players, including local celebrities, city officials and business owners, lost their games to youngsters in the 2018 Chess Challenge.

All Madison City Chess League members in the contest are 10 years old or younger. MCCL sponsored the challenge.

“The longest game in the challenge was between Ed Mullin and Xavier Bruni, which lasted almost two hours,” MCCL Executive Director Ranae Bartlett said.

The 2018 challenge enjoyed a new venue at Madison Public Library on Feb. 5. “MCCL was thrilled to hold this event as a fundraiser for both Madison Public Library and the chess league,” Bartlett said. “Together, your donations helped us raise $1,000 for Madison Public Library and $850 for MCCL. Thank you to the library for giving us a brand new home.”

The celebrity chess players and MCCL members included these pairings:

* City officials — Mayor Paul Finley vs. eight-year-old Louis Johnson; Madison City Council President Tommy Overcash vs. eight-year-old Holland Lang; District 7 Councilman John Seifert vs. eight-year-old Andrew Nguyen.

* State officials — Former state senator Tom Butler vs. eight-year-old Aadi Saxena; Jeff Enfinger, former state senator and owner of Enfinger Development, vs. 10-year-old Karsten Wallace; Federal Magistrate Judge Herman ‘Rusty’ Johnson vs. nine-year-old Nirvana Rajbhandari.

* Educators — Jamie Hill, Columbia Elementary School Principal, vs. Isabelle Park; Brian Givens, Rainbow Elementary Principal, vs. nine-year-old Hatch Lombardy.

* Business professionals — Taron Thorpe with CB&S Bank vs. nine-year-old Sahithi Mynampally; Ed Mullin, retired U.S. Army officer, vs. nine-year-old Xavier Bruni; Jay Allison with Synapse Wireless vs. nine-year-old Mark Allison; Alex Stokes with WHNT-News 19, vs. nine-year-old Caroline Wang; Bradley Wallace with PowerbookMedic.com vs. 10-year-old Swetha Jakka.

New for 2018, the event featured 12 simultaneous games with Bradley Denton, who is Master of Federation Internationale des Echecs or FIDE. Students competing with Denton were Owen Lang, Joseph Lee, Sydney Kelly, Samsara Rajbhandari, Constance Wang, Jason Park, Austin Holden, Zachary Calinsky, Landon Drummond, Alex Edwards, Sohan Mynampally and Wil Bao.

Denton defeated 11 students and reached a draw with Will Bao, a Bob Jones High School freshman.

For more information, visit madisonchess.com.

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