American Go E-Journal » U.S. Go Congress

Tina Li 3d Defends AGA Girls Cup Title

Tuesday July 30, 2019

Ronnie Fan 4d (left) vs. Tina Li 3d (right) at the 2019 AGA Girls Cup Finals

Tina Li 3d defeated Ronnie Fan 4d 2-1 in the AGA Girls Cup Finals at the US Go Congress in Madison, Wisconsin to defend her title and claim her second consecutive championship. Both girls are 13 years old. Taking black in game 1, Li launched an all-out-attack on one of Fan’s dragons, but Fan was able to live and cruise to victory by resignation as Li had little potential remaining after the attack. However, Li did not back down in game 2 the next day, turning the game into a large-scale battle where the status of multiple large dragons came into question. In the end, everything lived on both sides, but Li had the territorial advantage and won by 14.5 points. The final decisive game was much more peaceful with Li (who drew black) staking out a large framework and Fan slowly chipping away at it throughout the game. While Fan managed to make large incisions, it was not enough and Li secured the victory by 13.5 points as well as this year’s title. See below for the records of all three games.

Game 1
Game 2
Game 3

Special thanks to Seowoo Wang for broadcasting the games live on KGS as well as for assisting during the preliminaries, and to the American Go Foundation for sponsoring this tournament. This year’s tournament was the second edition of the annual AGA Girls Cup, which holds online preliminaries for two finalist spots and invitations to play in the Finals live at the US Go Congress. Registration for next year’s tournament will open in early 2020; competitors must be residents of North America, a female aged 15 or under, and a member of her national Go organization with an official rank of 10 kyu or stronger.
– story/photo by AGA Youth Coordinator and AGA Girls Cup TD Justin Teng

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2019 U.S. Go Congress credits

Sunday July 28, 2019

With this year’s U.S. Go Congress successfully concluded and rapidly fading into happy memories for the more than 400 go players who spent July 13-20 immersed in the game of go in Madison, WI, we wanted to take a moment to gratefully acknowledge to team of volunteers who made it all possible. Many of the folks below gave up the game for the week to make the Congress possible, and their dedication and commitment helped make this annual event the highlight of the American go calendar. Next year’s Congress is set for August 1-8 in Estes Park, CO; if you’d like to consider being a part of the Congress team, email lisa.scott@gocongress.org or journal@usgo.org if you’re interested in the E-Journal team.

2019 U.S. GO CONGRESS STAFF

E-Journal team; photo by Phil Straus

Congress Staff
Director – Dave Weimer
Deputy Director – Edward Ream
Registrar – Susan DeVos
Congress IT – Greg Steltenpohl
Pro Coordinator – I-Han Lui
Pro Coordinator Assistant – Satoru Inoue
Pro Coordinator Assistant – Daniel Zhao
Tournament Coordinator – Neil Ritter
AGA Congress Coordinator – Lisa Scott
Logo Design – Eric Piotrowski
Staff – Dan Kastenholtz
Staff – Yi Tong
UW Memorial Union Staff – Laura Richards
UW Memorial Union Staff – Lydia Dalton
UW Memorial Union Staff – Hannah Scott

E-Journal Staff
Managing Editor/Twitch stream host – Chris Garlock
Twitch stream producer – Michael Wanek
Assistant Twitch stream producer/host – Stephen Hu
Twitch stream music – Dash8
Support manager and head barista – Todd Heidenreich
IT department – Steve Colburn
Twitch stream hosts – Julie Burrall, Samantha Fede, Tyler Oyakawa, Nick Sibicky
Twitch stream Pro commentators – Yoonyoung Kim 8P, Yilun Yang 7P, Mingjiu Jiang 7P, Jennie Shen 2P, Ryan Li 1P, Stephanie Yin 1P
Twitch interviews – Keith Arnold
Head Game Recorder – Dennis Wheeler
Game recorders – Austin Harvey, Bart Jacobs, Anthony Long, Jeffrey Losapio, Edward Stackman
E-Journal Assistant Managing Editor – Karoline Li
E-Journal reporters – Julie Burrall, Samantha Fede
Future Staff – Quentin, Quentin

Special Thanks
Josh Lee, Andrew Hall, Dan Ritter, Solomon Smilack, Andy Okun

Congress Coverage
Twitch videos
AGA EJournal stories

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Ye and Huang Sweep 2019 Redmond Cup Finals

Friday July 26, 2019

Jeremy Chiu 6d (left) vs. Aaron Ye 7d (right) in the 2019 Redmond Cup Senior Division Finals

This year’s Redmond Cup Finals at the 2019 US Go Congress in Madison, Wisconsin marked both the conclusion of a dynasty and beginning of a new era. 17-year old Aaron Ye 7d defeated 17-year old Jeremy Chiu 6d 2-0 to win his 7th Redmond Cup title, a record which will likely not be broken for many years. Taking black in Game 1, Chiu managed to pull ahead with a small lead through the early middle-game, but Ye’s successful reduction of Chiu’s potential and subsequent defense against Chiu’s attacks gave Ye a solid territorial advantage ending in Chiu’s resignation. In the second game, Ye took an early territorial lead while Chiu attempted to build potential in the center. However, Ye’s sharp endgame cemented his lead, and after 272 moves, Ye had won by 15.5 points and clinched this year’s Senior Division title. Ever since 2011, Ye and Chiu have been mainstays at the top of the North American youth scene, taking 11 of the 18 finalist spots (7 for Ye and 4 for Chiu) in the Redmond Cup over 9 years. It will be exciting to see who will rise to the top in the coming years.

Frederick Bao 4d (left) vs. Kevin Huang 6d (right) in the 2019 Redmond Cup Junior Division Finals

In the Junior division (12 and under), 12-year old 2018 Junior runner-up Frederick Bao 4d faced new competition in 11-year old newcomer Kevin Huang 6d who had placed first in the online preliminaries earlier this year. Ever since 4-time Junior champion Ary Cheng 6d graduated to the Senior Division (13-17) after last year’s tournament, the Junior field has been left wide open for young lions to take the vacant throne. Game 1 opened with fierce fighting from the beginning, with Bao taking a territorial lead in exchange for giving Huang the upper edge in the center battle. Bao made consecutive invasions into the potential Huang had created, but Huang was relentless in his attacks. In the end, the influence Huang had gained from attacking Bao’s invasions was enough to kill one of Bao’s large dragons and secure the first victory of the series by resignation. In game 2 the next day, Huang started with the now-archaic mini-chinese opening and took a large lead in the opening. A brilliant tesuji sequence to kill one of Bao’s groups seemed like it would seal the victory, but Bao fought back ferociously to close the gap. While he was able to chip away at Huang’s lead bit by bit, the territorial difference was just too much to overcome, and Huang secured his first Redmond Cup title after a grueling 340 moves with a win by 17.5 points. While Bao will be graduating to the Senior division next year, Huang will be the player for up-and-coming young players to beat in next year’s Junior tournament.

SGF files of this year’s Finals games as well as more information about the Redmond Cup can be found on the Redmond Cup page. Special thanks to Ashish Varma and Jake Fink for broadcasting the games live on KGS, as well as to the American Go Foundation for sponsoring this tournament. Registration for the 27th Redmond Cup will open in January 2020 with the online preliminaries starting in March. – Story and Photos by AGA Youth Coordinator and Redmond Cup TD Justin Teng

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U.S. Go Congress tournament results

Sunday July 21, 2019

Jim Pickett plays Yoshitomo Nakata and Phil Straus plays Polly Pohl in round 5 of the Senior Tournament

The 35th US Go Congress closed with a celebration of the week’s tournament winners at the awards banquet Saturday evening. Tournament champions received prizes, and all players and Go Congress staff shared in good food, good cheer, and rousing recognition of the hard work put in by all.

US Open
Frederick Bao 6d won top prize in the top division of the US Open, edging out Canadian Go Association President James Sedgwick 6d in second place, and Chanseok Oh 6d in third by tie-breaks. See the full list of US Open division winners here.

Senior Tournament AKA “Geezer Go”
Bart Jacob 3k and Moon Oh 1d were both undefeated with five wins.

Women’s Tournament
Yacen Xie 5d, Sarah Crites 6k, and Hung-yao Chang 15k took the top prizes in each of the three divisions.

9×9 Tournament
James Sedgwick 6d took first place in the dan division while Neal Wright 5k won the kyu division.

13×13 Tournament
Kunxuan Li 4d and Sarah Crites 6k won the dan and kyu divisions respectively.

Lightning Tournament
Shixing Li 5d and Ben Gunby 2k won the dan and kyu divisions respectively.

Die Hard Tournament
Stephen (Xiaocheng) Hu 6d ran away with the dan division of the tournament with an undefeated four wins, and Billy Maier 3k won the kyu division, also with four wins.

Self-Paired Tournament
Jeff Horn 1d claimed three titles, “Dedicated” for most total games, “Philanthropist” for most wins given to others, and “Kyu Killer.” Other titles recognized were “Hurricane” for most total wins claimed by Marion Edey 9k, and “Dan Slayer” claimed by James Acres 1k.

-photo by Eva Casey
-report by Karoline Li Tournaments Bureau Chief

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U.S. Go Congress Tournaments Recap: Day 7

Saturday July 20, 2019

Congress Tournament Schedule: Saturday 7/20
9:00a: US Open, round 6

Stay tuned for US Open and other tournament results coming soon!

photo by Chris Garlock

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Nyu Eiko 2p wins 2019 U.S. Masters

Saturday July 20, 2019

Nyu Eiko 2p

The 2019 U.S. Masters tournament concluded dramatically Friday night as both Nyu Eiko 2p and Zhongfan Jian 7d killed huge groups in their final-round top-board games against Mark Lee 7d and Eric Lui 1p. Those wins gave Eiko the Masters championship and Jian second place. Click here for the Masters crosstab. Both top boards were broadcast live on the AGA’s Twitch stream, attracting 110,000 unique viewers around the world. For U.S. Open results through Round 5 (Round 6 is being played Saturday morning), click here.

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Youth players dominate the North American Pair Go Championship

Friday July 19, 2019

All four pairs at the top table of Thursday evening’s North American Pair Go Championship were youth attendees. Tina Li 3D and Aaron Ye 7D (below left with Hajin Lee 4P) ultimately prevailed, defeating Sophia Wang 4D and Jeremy Chiu 7D in the final game by 2.5 points. As the winning pair, Li and Ye will represent the United States at the 30th International Amateur Pair Go Championship in Tokyo, Japan this December. “We got off to a smooth start,” reports TD Todd Heidenreich, who was able to get the games going by 7:30. “With a larger tournament field of 112 players this year, we only had three boards that needed handicaps.” 

Top table results:
1st place: Tina Li 3d and Aaron Ye 7d
2nd place: Sophia Wang 4d and Jeremy Chiu 7d
3rd place: Melissa Cao 4d and Alan Huang 7d
4th place: Katherine Xie 1d and Willis Huang 6d

-report/photos by Hajin Lee

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U.S. Go Congress Tournaments Recap: Day 6

Friday July 19, 2019

Isobel Liang 12k plays Antonina Perez-Lopez 19k in the fourth round

Congress Tournament Schedule: Friday 7/19
9:00a: US Open, round 5; US Open Masters Division, round 6
1:00p: Senior Tournament, round 5
3:00p: Women’s Tournament, round 4
9:00p: Self-Paired Tournament ends – get those results turned in!

Women’s Tournament
Yacen Xie 5d, Lenka Dankova 4k, and Hung-Yao Chang 15k are undefeated with one round to go in this year’s Women’s Tournament with three wins each. The multinational field includes players from Japan, the Czech Republic (Dankova), and Mexico – 12-year-old Paola Ortega 10k is part of a team from Mexico sponsored by the AGF.

-photo by Samantha Fede
-report by Karoline Li, Tournaments Bureau Chief

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Eiko Nyu 2P leads Masters; final Friday night

Friday July 19, 2019

Japanese pro Eiko Nyu 2P is leading the 2019 Masters tournament with a 5-0 record going into the last two rounds on Friday. Eric Lui, Mark Lee and Zhongfan Jian are all 4-1. Rounds 6 and 7 will be broadcast live on OGS and the AGA’s Twitch stream Friday; Round 6 starting at 10a EDT and Round 7 at 8p EDT (and streamed live in the Great Hall), with commentary by Yilun Yang 7p and Jennie Shen 2P, hosted by Julie Burrall 1d, Samantha Fede 5k, Tyler Oyakawa 5d and Nick Sibicki 4d. Complete tourney results posted here. U.S. Open results here.

U.S. Open Round 4 in the Great Hall Thursday, July 18; photo by Chris Garlock
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U.S. Go Congress Tournaments Recap: Day 5

Thursday July 18, 2019

One Color Knights Move Go

US Go Congress Tournament Schedule: Thursday 7/18
9:00a: US Open, round 4; US Open Masters Division, round 5
1:00p: Senior Tournament, round 4
3:00p: Women’s Tournament, round 3
7:00p: Pair Go

Crazy Go!
“Crazy Go was its usual laughter and insanity” reports Terry Benson, who directs the “tournament” every year. “Well over 100 congress attendees ‘played,’ but watching was at least as common.” Benson also reports that a new variant was created this year by three of the kids: One Color Knights Move Go (right), played between two players and a third to record the game and referee.

-photos by Terry Benson
-report by Karoline Li, Tournaments Bureau Chief

Maximo and Charles Boley play U.S. Go on a board shaped like the United States
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