Contestants nab grade-level titles in City Chess Blitz Championship

MADISON – Young players vied for top places in the 2021 City Chess Blitz Championship. Madison is the only city in the State of Alabama that hosts a grade-level championship for chess.

“Congratulations to our 2021 City Chess Champions,” Ranae Bartlett said. Bartlett is Executive Director of Madison City Chess League or MCCL, the tournament’s host. “This year’s City Chess Championship was held online on ChessKid.com and was a ‘Blitz’ tournament where kids have five minutes per side to complete their moves.”

Systems Products and Solutions Inc. or SPS sponsored the Tournament and enabled the first-place winners to receive a cash prize in grade-level sections. Cash awards for kindergarten through second-grade players were $50, and cash awards for third through twelfth grades were $100. The top three players in each grade level were awarded medals.

During Madison City Council’s meeting on May 10, Nilmini Thompson, who is CEO of SPS, recognized the first-place grade-level winners. Each winner received a water bottle with candy inside. “Ms. Thompson also presented MCCL with a Grandmaster Level donation for the 2021 year! We are so grateful to her constant support of our chess league and this tournament that began in 2016,” Bartlett said.

The City Chess Champions for 2021 are grouped by grade level:

* Kindergarten — Jimmy McHugh and Alice Zou, co-champions; Milan Malak, third.

* First grade — Dennis Lenski , first; Asher Allison, second; Annabelle Hsu, third.

* Second grade — Esteban Jerez and Kylie Zou, co-champions; Esinam Tettey, third.

* Third grade — Daksh Sunil, first; Andrew Tkach, second; Emerson Phillips, third.

* Fourth grade — Sophia Jerez and Jethro Jones, co-champions; Noah Hsu, third.

* Fifth grade — Anna Ai, first; Caden Jordan, second; Laya Gowder, third.

* Sixth grade — Xavier Bruni, first; Aadi Saxena, second; Aneesh Maruvada, third.

* Seventh grade — Nirvana Rajbhandari, Artem Starenki and Eddie Xiao, co-champions.

* Eighth grade — Zachary Calinsky, Caleb Chen and Oviya Gowder, co-champions.

* Ninth grade — Rachael Ehrman, first; Madhu Balaji, second; Andrew Park, third.

* Tenth grade — Sherwood Dong, first; Constance Wang, second; Victor Lundy, third.

* Eleventh grade — Will Fox, first; Om Badhe, second; Edward Calinsky, third.

* Twelfth grade — Will Bao, first; Josh Lin, second.

This tournament was open only to Madison residents or youth attending Madison City Schools. For more information, call 256-970-4762, email mccl.director@gmail.com or visit madisonchess.com.

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