Stories and insights on excellent education.
This weekend, 151 scholars representing 15 Success Academy schools traveled to Saratoga Springs, N.Y., to compete in the 50th Annual New York State Scholastic Chess Championships.
From Friday afternoon through Monday morning, scholars ate, slept, and breathed chess. They played six games (each lasting up to two hours) during the two-day tournament, which featured 1,200 students from across New York State. Scholars spent much of their downtime playing fast-paced blitz chess games, studying chess tactics, and competing in after-dinner matches against their coaches.
All weekend long, our scholar’s love for chess shined — and it showed in their results, too. Here are some highlights:
- SA Union Square and SA Bronx 1 dominated in the Middle School Reserve section, finishing in first and second place, respectively.
- The SA High School of the Liberal Arts team finished in second place in the High School Reserve section, which featured 17 teams. Leading the team’s strong performance was tenth grader Reanna Phillips, who won five of six games.
- In the Middle School Championship section — a division with 16 teams where only top players compete — SA Bronx 1 finished in fourth place and SA Harlem East finished fifth.
- SA Midtown West and SA Cobble Hill tied for third place in the Elementary School Championship section (the most competitive elementary school division).
- SA Hell’s Kitchen finished in sixth place in the Primary Championship, which featured top competitors from elementary school grades.
- In the Elementary School Intermediate section, SA Union Square and SA Williamsburg finished fourth and sixth place, respectively, out of 26 teams.
- In the Elementary Reserve section, SA Union Square finished in second and SA Bronx 3 finished in third place. SA Bed Stuy ES and MS (combined team) finished in fifth place.
SA Midtown West: Weston White, Aarush Sharma, Rachel Bochman, Ethan Lee, Aiden Kuo, Maximo Young Kim, Jason Maldonaldo, Sencha Kreymerman, Gavin Nelson, Kristian Garcia, Lucas Brown, Ariel Estime. Coach: Erick Balck
SA Harlem East: Samuel Eyre, Shadman Khan, Christian Chin, Edward Morales, Damon Chin, Adam Senhaji, Andrew Breton, Shaharia Khan, Litsi Auquilla, Elizabeth Morales, Najma Gure, Jayllyz Vasquez. Coach: Fritz Gaspard
SA Bronx 1 Middle School: William Perez, Dionald Suazo, Bally Sissoko, Max Crespo, Darren Palmer, Abdoulaye Amadou, Isis Diaz, Jorden Julien, Quinlan Alday, Alex Martinez, Alhassana Diallo, Ethan Alexander, Nicolas Diaz. Coach: Alejandro Montalvo. Coach: Alejandro Montalvo
SA Harlem North West: Ethan Moses, Orion Caldwell, JonAaron Arnell, Elliot Deutou, Jason Zabre, Xavier Carey, Patrick Cespedes, Kazumasa Linuma. Coach: Tae Kim
SA High School of the Liberal Arts: Shane Alston, Alex Ordonez, Abudurazaq Aribidesi, Philipos Mekonen, Ka-Nefer Petersen, Kadidia Sylla, Reanna Phillips, Joshua Abbey, Matthewos Mekonen, Alexander Ordonez. Coach: Charu Robinson
SA Harlem West: Che Dixon (competed as individual). Coach: Charu Robinson
SA Bed-Stuy 1 and SA Bed-Stuy Middle School: Mouhamadou Tall, Ivan Morris, Christopher Ortiz, Jean Carlos Alomia, Martine McKenzie, Tabia Davis, Isaiah Brewster, Jessica Hyatt, Geah Jean Baptiste, Geordany Solomon, Makhi Williams, Amare Purifoy, Natalia Riley, Ethan Rodriguez, Micah Scobie. Coaches: Gregory Rudensky and Tyrell Harriott
SA Union Square: Alexander Kempe, Silas Smith, Jayden Shum, Madison Shum, Ian Tracy, Minal Omer, Maya Mukherji, Anya Omer, Scarlet Smith, George Best, Seth Fenton, Rachel Prizant, Daniel Prizant, Krish Patni, Emily Booncharoen, Nathan Booncharoen, Ann Goldey, Andrew Buchanan, Pari Patni, Vukasin Usina, Aarush Naveen. Coach: Nicholas Norman
SA Hell’s Kitchen: Renzo Lau, Aston Roberts, Boris McCoy, Hongxiang Zhang, Daniel Henk, Iris Ye, Noah Lee, Beckett Byrne, Jiayi Ye, Taise Martinez, Benjamin Volovik, Micah Parra-Orellana. Coach: Robert Lazorchak
SA Upper West: Hudson Kreymerman, Eli Nelson, Carter Kuo, Ava Trujillo, Hannah Lee, Florian Islamaj, Orianya Johnson. Coach: Jacob Stein
SA Harlem 1: Gabriel Espinal, Tyquan Haskins, Jaden Brown, Jamal Fields, Tejas Perna, Shawn Dean, Kimberly Guzman, Saori Espinosa. Coach: Asandoh Jones
SA Cobble Hill: Vincenzo Montanti, Aaron Kudryavsky, Thomas Bray-Vargas, Charles Phillips, Arielle Belobrovka, Nura Baalla, Margaret Stacey, Miles Hardingwood. Coach: Boris Izrayelit
SA Williamsburg: Ian Young Chen, Kyle Chen, Jaden Diaz, Sage Sewell, Dylan Eisenberg, Annika Parsia, Evan Eisenberg, Gabryela Caban, Julio Zhindon, Harry McSween, Sasha Zhindon. Coach: Greg Kenner
SA Bronx 3: Joel Granados, Adaai Adorno, Tyler Barclay, Roosevelt Moses, Marcella Reyes Rivera, Madison Williams, Luna Reisoglu. Coach: Dakim Vanterpool
SA Harlem 4: Brewington Hardaway, Noni Hardaway, Travis McGowan, Duany Pena, Mickai Young, Matthew Otoo. Coach: Christopher Johnson
SA Fort Greene:
Jayden Guerrier, Waiden Guerrier. Coach: Fabian Winter
Congratulations to all of our teams (listed below) who competed this weekend! And of course, we thank all of our parents and coaches for coming out to support our scholar’s love for chess — even in (chilly) Saratoga Springs!
SA Union Square with coach, Nicholas Norman. SA Union Square finished first in the Middle School Reserve Section. Photo credit Tom Perna.
SA High School of the Liberal Arts, with coach Charu Robinson. The team finished second in the High School Reserve section. Photo credit Tom Perna.
SA Hell’s Kitchen scholars play a blitz game after round six at NY State Chess Championships.
SA Harlem East coach Fritz Gaspard reviews a game with his scholars. Gaspard uses Chess X software to simulate each play, and see where there’s room for improvement.
SA Bed Stuy 1 MS scholar Jessica Hyatt goes head-to-head with Sean O'Hanlon in an after-dinner blitz round, where they each received only five total minutes of play time. Jessica forces him to resign in game one, but falls to him during game two.