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

Club News: Evanston Boosts Tourney Turn-Out; Austin Hosts May Tourney

Monday May 12, 2014

Evanston Boosts Tourney Turn-Out: The Evanston Go Club held its regular quarterly tournament on May 10, with 22 players attending. Players ranged from beginner to 6 dan.  Albert Yen took the dan prize with a 4-0 record, Nathan Chan dominated the single-digit kyu division with a 4-1 record, and new-comer Mary Skolnik, playing in her first tournament, won the double-digit kyus at 4-1. “We tried something a little different this time.”, said TD Mark Rubenstein. “In an effort to get more participants, we offered free attendance to anyone who had not been to one of our tournaments in the last 16 months. And in an effort to boost attendance at our weekly club, we also offered free entry to anyone who came to three club meetings before the tournament. Of the 22 players, 9 were first-time attendees, so we think we are onto something. Since there was less money available prizes, books were given instead. Many thanks to Bob Barber for donating the entire 6-volume set of Yilun Yang’s Workshop Lectures series.”
photo: Albert Yen, 6 dan plays teaching games with Teddy Garrison and Emily No, both 25k.

Austin Hosts May Tourney: Sixteen players participated in the “May…you win” tournament held in Austin, TX on May 10th. Players came from as far away as Houston and Dallas to participate in this 4-round handicap tournament held at Great Hall Games, which hosts the Austin Go Club every Tuesday night. Gift certificates were awarded to 5 players who each had 3 wins: Michael Ruiz 1K (3-0); John Zhang 4D (3-1); Andy Olsen 3D (3-1); JT Jackson 8K (3-1); Kyle Highful 13K (3-1).

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Nominations Open for 2014 AGA Board Elections

Saturday May 10, 2014

Four American Go Association (AGA) Board of Director seats are up for election this year, including the three regional seats and the At-Large seat. Broad authority for organizational decisions and management throughout the year resides with the AGA Board, which selects the President. The current terms of office expire this September. Nominations may be made by full AGA members for the At-Large seat and the regional seat in which the member resides and must be received by June 15. Nominations and questions must be emailed to elections@usgo.org. Click here for complete election information and qualifications.

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Straus Washington Open Baduk Championships Photo Album Posted

Wednesday May 7, 2014

Photographer (and former AGA president) Phil Straus has just posted an album of 28 high-resolution photos from the April 27-28 Washington Open Baduk Championships, which includes portraits of many of the players and dignitaries in attendance. The photos may be freely used but must credit Straus.
photo: Baltimore Go Club organizer Keith Arnold (left) gets a lesson; photo by Phil Straus 

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84 Compete in School Teams Tourney

Monday May 5, 2014

The School Team Tournament drew 84 kids and teens, reports organizer Calvin Sun 1P. Held on KGS, March 22 and 29, the event is organized by the American Go Honor Society (AGHS) every year. “28 teams of three competed in four divisions to claim the title of best youth team in North America,” said Sun, “ranks ranged from 25k to 6d.” Top honors in the Varsity division went to Diamond Bar High School, CA. “I want to thank AGHS and our tournament organizers for running such an amazing event,”  said team leader Yunxuan Li 6d. “It was very fun and exciting to compete with other go clubs throughout North America. Our club started this school year (see E-J 11-5-13) and I was pretty surprised that we won the tournament after such a short time period. We got lucky in a lot of our games.  This is a great event for our youth players and it is really wonderful to see new clubs playing in it and enjoying it every year.”

The Junior Varsity division was topped by reigning champions, Cary Christian School, from North Carolina, who have fielded multiple teams for the past several year, often winning one or more divisions. “The kids really enjoyed it,” said Team Advisor Jeff Kuang, “especially, the kids in CCS Team one (who took first place).  They learned not only go skills but also online playing experience and etiquette.” Another new team, David Douglas High School, from Portland, OR, took top honors in the Intermediate division. “It was a very pleasant surprise,” said club president Andrew Nguy 19k, “it was our first tournament, and none of us really expected to even place, much less win first.”  Rounding out the winners list in the Novice division was a team from CNY Chinese School in Manlius New York, which was coached by the 2013 AGF Teacher of the Year Richard Moseson. “This was my first online tournament,” said 8-year-old Liya Luk, who played first board. “I liked it because it lasted two Saturdays, so our team could prepare in between the Saturdays. I had lots of fun doing the tournament.” -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo by Siddhartha Avila: Youth from Mexico City competed from the public library.  Avila’s students from multiple locations, fielded five teams.

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Your Move/Readers Write: Earliest Indication of Go in North America? & Another Turn-Based Site

Saturday May 3, 2014

Earliest Indication of Go in North America? “I was just reading the latest copy of the Archaeology Magazine, May/June 2014 and I came across an article by Samir S. Patel about the early Chinese work camps in North America,” writes Sam Zimmerman. “In the article on page 41 they showed a picture of ‘gambling pieces’ (right) from a British Columbia camp of the 1850s-1860s. They certainly look like they are wei-chi stones and they may be the earliest indications of the game being played North America. I have contacted Archaeology Magazine in hope so getting more information.”
See also: ‘The Archaeology of Internment’  5/9/2011 EJ 

Another Turn-Based Site: “In your latest newsletter you mentioned that Yahoo was ceasing its online gaming site (Website Update: Yahoo Go Gone 5/2/2014 EJ) and listed several sites where you could play turn-based go,” writes Jim Hopper. “You failed to list a site located at ItsYourTurn.com which is also a nice place to play people all over the world a variety of games including go. Check it out.”
- graphic from Archaeology Magazine courtesy Doug Ross, Simon Fraser University

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First Batch of Pros Confirmed for U.S. Go Congress

Thursday May 1, 2014

Feng Yun 9P, Myungwan Kim 9P, Yang Yilun 7P and Stephanie Yin 1P have confirmed that they’ll be teaching at this year’s U.S. Go Congress. Pro delegations from Japan, China and Korea are also expected. The weeklong event will be held August 9-17 in New York City and features pro lectures and simuls, as well as rated and unrated tournaments. Click here to register.
- photo: Stephanie Yin, playing on Board 2 at the recent Washington Open Baduk Tournament, checks out the Board 1 game between Andy Liu 1P (right) and Kevin Huang 7d. photo by Chris Garlock

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Cuba-Mexico Youth Visit “A Beautiful Experience”

Thursday May 1, 2014

The recent Cuba – Mexico go exchange (Cuban Go Community Hosts Visits by Mexican Youth & Japanese Teachers 4/15 EJ) “was a big event and a beautiful experience,” said Rafael Torres Miranda, President of the Academia Cubana de Go. The go competition between Mexican and Cuban school children was held April 14-18 in Havana. Five Mexican children, accompanied to Cuba by a relative, and seven Cubans participated, ranging from age 7 to 11 and from 13 to 20 kyu in strength. The event was featured on Cuban television.
- Bob Gilman; photos courtesy Rafael Torres Miranda; collage by Chris Garlock

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N.A. Player Selection Tourney for Samsung Cup 2014 Announced

Wednesday April 30, 2014

The Korean Baduk Association has once again invited the AGA to send three North American representatives to compete in the World division of the Samsung Cup World Baduk Masters 2014 in Korea. Interested players must be 5D+ citizens or permanent residents of North America, have resided in North America for 6 of the past 12 months, and have maintained continuous AGA membership (does not apply to Canadian players) for the past year. Players will be responsible for their travel and lodging expenses; the tournament will provide a $1,000 incentive to each player to help cover some costs.
To select the players the AGA will hold a flexible scheduling tournament on KGS during the second half of May with default rounds on May 20, 23, 27, and 30. This schedule is designed so that the possible times for each round includes at least one weekend day. The selected players will play in the combined preliminaries set for August 3-6. Those interested and eligible must fill out this electronic form to register by Friday, May 16. Skype will be required for all players.
- Karoline Burrall
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Updating Your Profile

Wednesday April 30, 2014

If you’re changing your email address, make sure you don’t miss an issue of the E-Journal by clicking on “UPDATE YOUR PROFILE” at the bottom of the EJ (be careful NOT to click on UNSUBSCRIBE!), where you can also choose either the daily or weekly edition and your preferred format. You can also easily share the EJ by clicking on FORWARD TO A FRIEND.

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Player Profile: The Return of Kang

Tuesday April 29, 2014

by Keith L. Arnold, hka

A soft voice slowed me as I rushed past at last weekend’s first Washington Open Baduk Championship, which was organized by Allan Abramson, Gary Smith, Todd Heidenreich, Andy Okun and myself. I turned to see Shin Kang, who embraced me like an old friend. Mr. Kang, of Ellicott City, Maryland, was the hero of Baltimore go players when I began playing back in the 1980′s, and I was extremely honored and touched that he recalled me from our few meetings over the years.

Shin Kang (at left in photo) was the highest-rated player in the U.S. during the late 1970s, above even the legendary Takeo Matsuda of New York, and Young Paeng of Pittsburgh, an old rival he asked about on Sunday. Kang was the Eastern Champion, or “Honinbo” from 1976 to 1978 and won the Maryland Open for its first 5 years, 1974 to 1978, and again in 1980. He lost in the phone relay US Championship to Kyung Kim of San Francisco in 1976, and, for the most part, paid his own way to get out to San Francisco in 1977 to try again face-to-face, but once again was defeated by Mr. Kim; their games were commented on by no less a luminary than Haruyama 9 dan. Meanwhile, he sponsored a teaching tour by Kim In 8P, and was top board in a telex match with Taipei.

In 1978, JAL sponsored the U.S. Championship in New York, but Mr. Kang’s opponent was not Mr. Kim but Shigeo Matsuhara of Los Angeles. Mr. Matsuhara’s victory in the Western Championship was considered quite an upset; after all, he had been defeated that year in the Los Angelos Open by a fifteen-year-old kid named Michael Redmond.

Mr. Kang won two straight games to become US Champion, and went on to represent the US in the first World Amateur Go Championship, along with Mr. Matsuhara, Mr. Kim and team captain Richard Dolen. Sadly for us, work pushed tournament go out Mr. Kang’s life for many years. Now retired, we can only hope we will see more of the 66-year-old former importer and wholesaler.

Kang won his first game at last weekend’s first Washington Open Baduk Championship, lost his second, but then won rounds 3 and 4 and I was excited to see him on board 2 for the final round. I was ecstatic when a re-pairing put him on Board One against the undefeated Andy Liu (at right in photo). I showed E-Journal Managing Editor — and Board 1 game recorder — Chris Garlock a listing on my IPad of Kang’s impressive Maryland Open record as Andy walked by, took a look and softly exclaimed “Oh, wow!” at the record of his fellow Maryland Open champion so many years before his birth.

Mr. Kang greeted Andy with a combination of respect, fellowship and, I think, pride, in his role in bringing American go to a place where this young man could sit across from him, “So, you are the pro,” he smiled. “I look forward to receiving a good lesson.” Liu 1p respectfully but strongly responded “We are equals here.” It was a wonderful moment, one of the first generation of great American go players, enjoying the chance to see what has grown from the seeds he planted, and today’s pioneer, recognizing and appreciating their shared and ongoing journey.
- photos by Chris Garlock (top right) and Phil Straus (bottom left) 

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