American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America

AGA Seeks Player Comment on SportAccord Selection Process

Thursday April 18, 2013

Should the North American Masters Tournament (NAMT) be used to select North American representatives to the SportAccord World Mind Games? The American Go Association is looking for comment by strong players (players with AGA rating 6.0 and up) on this proposal. With a total prize fund of $400,000, the SportAccord World Mind Games (SAWMG) is the  most lucrative international event North American go players can compete in. The event sponsors, SportAccord and the Beijing City government, pay for travel and accommodation, plus generous prize money for all players. “If we use the NAMT as the selection tournament, we raise its profile as a prestigious event,” says AGA President Andy Okun. “And for an event as significant as the SAWMG, a face-to-face selection tournament would seem better.” The NAMT points selection and 16-player format — all citizen and permanent resident professionals invited with two seats reserved for Canadian amateur participants — would remain largely the same. However, since the SAWMG previously has invited both male and female players, the proposal includes a format change to the NAMT requiring that 2-4 seats in the tournament be filled by women eligible for SAWMG (citizens), chosen by traditional NAMT qualification procedures (professional or most points). The 2013 SAWMG invitations and format have not been finalized yet, but assuming that the AGA is invited to send at least one male and one female player again this year, the highest finishing eligible male and female players (citizens) in the 2013 NAMT would be the AGA representatives to SportAccord. Strong players (players with AGA rating 6.0 and up) are urged to click here by May 1 to weigh in on the proposal.
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E-Journal Editor’s 200-mi UK Walk to Raise Funds for AGF

Wednesday April 17, 2013

American Go E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock 3D and his wife Lisa are walking nearly 200 miles across England this May to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary and raise funds for the American Go Foundation, which is dedicated to promoting go in the U.S. “This is a really wonderful idea,” said AGF President Terry Benson. “It’s generous players like Chris that make the AGF work possible. The more support we get, the more we can do for go.” With the AGF’s support, thousands of American children have learned go in hundreds of schools, libraries and community centers across the country. The AGF also provide scholarships and resources for youth who play go, and supports go in institutional settings such as prisons, and senior centers. “Donate what you can,” says Garlock, “whatever you give will go to help promote go across the United States.” Click here to donate. Considered the second best walk in the world, the Coast to Coast Walk is a 182-mile unofficial and mostly unsignposted long distance footpath in Northern England. Devised by Alfred Wainwright, it passes through the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales, and North York Moors National Parks.
- photo: Garlock on a training walk on the Seneca Creek Trail Greenway earlier this month; photo by Lisa Garlock 

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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Sedgwick Elementary Discovers Go in California

Tuesday April 16, 2013

Wenguang Wang and Yanping Zhao presented a “Learn to Play Go” program at Sedgwick Elementary School, in Cupertino, CA, on April 2nd.  “It was Sedgwick’s Annual Discovery Day,” reports Wang, “and we introduced go to four classes of third-graders (about 80 kids total).  The kids were very excited when they learned some fun facts of go, learned the basic rules, and played a few 9×9 games.  We also had a good time with the kids.” – Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo by Wenguang Wang.

Go In The News: “Go Big Or Go Home” on Narrative.ly.com

Tuesday April 16, 2013

“It’s a cold night in January 2012 and Peter Armenia is sitting on a Flushing-bound seven train, anticipating culture shock,” writes Lani Conway in “Go Big Or Go Home” in the April 2 edition of Narrative.ly. “For two decades, Armenia has played the ancient Chinese game of go, always wondering how his skills would hold up at a traditional Asian club. Tonight, he’s finally getting his chance.” The piece is an excellent portrait of the current American go scene, with a focus on New York City but touching on last year’s first American pro tournament, an introduction to the history of the game and how to play, as well as a nice report on Armenia’s humbling visit to a Flushing Korean go club that weaves in stratagems from “Thirty-Six Strategies: The Secret Art of War.” graphic: detail from Mo Oh’s story illustration

Registration Opens for 3rd Annual Young Kwon National Online Tournament

Monday April 15, 2013

Featuring a prize purse on nearly $3,000, the third annual Young Kwon National Online Tournament (YKNOT) will take place in June. Registration is free, and all levels are welcome to participate. Prizes will be awarded in all divisions. Dedicated to promoting go in the US, Young Kwon 7D of Pearl River, NY (see “The Man Behind the YKNOT Tournament” 12/20/2010 EJ) first sponsored this tournament in 2011. The 2013 YKNOT will take place over two weekends in June, following the same format as last year: rounds 1 and 2 on Saturday June 1, round 3 on Sunday June 2, and rounds 4 and 5 on Saturday June 8. All AGA members who have lived in the US six of the past 12 month –and AGA life members living anywhere – are eligible to participate. Registration closes Friday, May 24 at midnight. Click here for tournament details and rules.

Categories: U.S./North America
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First Don Wiener Memorial Draws 40 Players in Boston

Monday April 15, 2013

The first annual Don Wiener Memorial Tournament was held in Somerville Massachusetts on April 14, attracting 40 players. Gus Heck 1k (middle) won all four of his games to take first place and said he will enter his next tournament as 1 dan. Tied for second were Michael Sun (left) and Kan Yao (right), both 3-1. Runners-up, all also 3-1: Jie Liang, Jonah White, Jed Strohm, Graham Higgins, Tiantian Yuan, Karen Ogg, John Aspinall, James Peters, Wensdy Whitehead, Dmitriy Yamkovoy and Anna Wiggins.

Old technologies met new at the tournament. “The Boylston Chess Club, in whose space we hold the tournament, has an unlocked cabinet with old wind-up chess clocks,” report TD Eva Casey. The dozen or so clocks the Massachusetts Go Association owns are also wind-up. Young Manu Herskovit 17k asked Casey if the clock would tell him when his time was up. “You have to notice when the flag falls,” she told him. “What flag?” Herskovit asked. Casey demonstrated by manually moving the clock’s big hand forward until it started lifting the red flag. “It’s entirely mechanical!” Herskovit said in surprise. With the large number of pre-registrants, Casey was not sure she was going to have enough of the wind-up chess clocks, but Adam Luter got out his smart phone and found a chess clock app. “I would have had to ask Manu how to work that app,” Caseys admits.
- photo (l-r): Michael Sun, Gus Heck, Kan Yao; photo by Eva Casey

Categories: U.S./North America
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Joshua Lee Wins Orlando Go Tourney

Monday April 15, 2013

Joshua Lee 5d won the Orlando Go Tournament, held April 13-14 in Orlando, FL. Thirty-three players participated in the 5-round event, with strengths ranging from 20 kyu to 7 dan and held in four divisions.

Winner’s Report: Upper Dan (4D and up): 1st: Joshua Lee (5D); 2nd: Long Nguyen (4D); 3rd: Tengxiao Yang (7D). Lower Dan (1K through 3D): 1st: Fuqian Shi (3D); 2nd: Zach Dunham (1D); 3rd: Joel Sanet (2D). Upper Kyu: (7K through 2K); 1st: Efrain Davila (3K); 2nd: Don Colladay (4K); 3rd: Tony Vick (5K). Lower Kyu (8K and down): 1st: Ellis Knickerbocker (10K); 2nd: Michael Shamp (18K); 3rd: Aaron Otero (11K).
- photo: Joshua Lee (left) and Liangyue Qian (right); report/photo by Paul Wiegand

Categories: U.S./North America
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Albert Einstein High Tops School Teams Tourney

Monday April 15, 2013

The American Go Honor Society hosted its 14th annual School Team Tournament on March 16th and 23rd, reports tournament organizer Andrew Huang. Close to a hundred youth players from across the United States, Canada, and Mexico participated in three divisions over two weekends. A total of 30 teams from 17 schools took part in the event. “In the first division, the top ranked team was from Richard Montgomery High School, in Maryland,” reports Huang. “Led by Justin Teng 5d, with Anatol Liu 3k, and Andrew Liu 4k, the team seemed to be early favorites, winning their first two rounds. However, they were defeated in round 3 by local rivals, from Albert Einstein High School, led by Julian Erville 2k, with Ben Withbroe 2k, and Elmer Martinez-Rivas 9k; Richard Montgomery High eventually settled for third place. Albert Einstein High clinched the Division 1 championship in the final round, fending off a fierce challenge from California’s Joaquin Miller Middle School, led by Daniel Liu 3d, with Wilson Zhang 1k, and Oscar Yeh 6k, who placed second. The bottom two divisions were as exciting as the first, with several upsets and dramatic games. Teams from Saint Ann’s School and Albert Einstein High School all placed in prize-winning positions in their respective divisions. However, Divisions 2 and 3 were dominated by teams from Cary Chinese School, from North Carolina, with two of their three teams placing first in both divisions, and another third in Division 3. Cary’s teams had a combined record of 10-2 over four rounds, and earned their school three well-deserved prizes. This year’s School Team Tournament was exciting yet again and showed us some of the best qualities of go. We encourage the kids to maintain their enthusiasm and look forward to seeing everyone again at next year’s tournament,” said Huang. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.

Lee Sedol Drives AGA/Europe Pro Team to 3 Stones

Sunday April 14, 2013

Defeating U.S. professional Gangshen Shi 1P on two stones, Lee Sedol 9P (right) has driven the AGA-Europe pro team to three stones in the AGA-Europe Pro vs. Sedol 10-game series on go9dan.com. The AGA/Europe team desperately needed to clinch their first victory in the series, which has just two games to go. “It was a well-fought game for Gansheng until the game approached the end,” go9dan reports. “Gansheng captured a group in the upper right corner and was ahead in the game. But then after he entered byo-yomi, the board started to get complicated.” Click here for comments on where Shi went wrong and to see the game record. European pro Catalin Taranu will play Lee in Game #9, taking three stones; stay tuned for details on the date/time.
- photo: Lee at the 2012 Olleh KT Cup; photo courtesy GoGameGuru

2013 U.S. Go Congress Registration Opens

Thursday April 11, 2013

“Registration is now open for the 2013 U.S. Go Congress!” says Congress Co-Director Chris Kirschner. Click on “Sign In” at the top of the Congress website  and you can register, choose your housing and meal plans and even sign up for Day Off activities. Although technical glitches delayed opening registration, “We’re back on track and excited about our plans,” adds Kirschner. Carrying on the Northwest tradition of providing something new at Congresses there, Kirschner says this year’s Congress “will include a special workshop for teachers who will get a $50 rebate of their Congress registration courtesy of the American Go Foundation.” The Korean Baduk Association is considering sending Korean pros who are particularly interested in meeting and teaching the American baduk (go) teaching community. And in a groundbreaking style development, Kirchner reports that “There will be alternative Congress tee shirt styles and colors,” including three styles for women and alternative colors in all styles. This year’s Go Congress also features a brand-new competitive event, the pentathlon. “Only for the truly dedicated competitors, the pentathlon will combine results from the U.S. Open, Self-Paired, 9×9, 13×13 and Lightning tournaments,” says Kirschner. “So far as we know, this has never been done before.” - photo: Point Defiance Park, near the 2013 Congress site