American Go E-Journal

New AGA Chapters for July 2019

Thursday August 1, 2019

The AGA is regularly asked for new chapters around the country. These are the newly registered chapters from July 2019:

Peoria & Normal Go Club – Approximately every two weeks on Saturday or Sunday afternoon – Contact Brad Rose

Members should check their information when logging in. If you are not receiving the EJ make sure your email is up to date. Chapters can always update their current chapter through the AGA Membership Manager if they have changed.

Go Spotting: Google Classroom

Wednesday July 31, 2019

Go is now among the themes available for classes on Google Classroom, reports Alicia Seifrid. First launched in 2014, Google Classroom is an all-in-one platform for teachers, giving them online tools to post lesson material, distribute, collect and grade assignments, and communicate with students. When creating a new class (something any user with a Google account can do), you can apply a graphic theme to your class pages. For the Go graphic, under the “Other” category, look for the “Game Night” theme.
edited by Brian Olive

Categories: Go Spotting,Main Page
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2019 World Youth Goe Championship: Day 1 report

Tuesday July 30, 2019

Crystalline waters, comforting warmth and miles of golf courses… everything you’d expect at the Phileas Beach Resort in Selangor, Malaysia. But behind these peaceful scenes, a vicious battle rages on. Not a physical struggle, of course, but one of mentality, and awareness. The 36th World Youth Go Championship has started, and the players are ready to prove themselves, including the three U.S. representatives, Alexander Qi 4d and Noah Flaherty 15k for the Junior Division, and Ary Chen 5d for the Senior Division.

The tournament begins with Alex Qi facing Artemii Pishchaniklov (Russia), Noah Flaherty facing Shuntaro Saga (Japan), and Ary Chen facing Shih-Chun Chung (Chinese Taipei). After two and a half hours of intense fighting and quick calculating, the U.S. team pulls two victories. They’ve got some time before the next round, and there’s plenty to do as they relax and unwind, exploring the stunning resort, the pool and so much more.

However, as they flood back into the playing room, the tension is still palpable as the players, refreshed, prepare for the second round. The second round pairings are Ary Chen against Li HoaTong (1P, China) Alex Qi against Hsu Ni-Ni (Chinese Taipei, 7d) and Noah Flaherty against Oleskandr Shchepaniuk (Ukraine, 4k), and this time the U.S. team falls to their stronger opponents. Still, under the encouragement and guidance of team leader MingJiu Jiang, they look forward to the next rounds. Now that this day’s grueling “war” has come to a close, the U.S. players can finally relax, and let all their tensions flood away. After all, tomorrow brings a new day – and there are players to beat, and battles to win.
-report/photos by Ashley Qi

Categories: Main Page,World,Youth
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A Pro in Mexico

Tuesday July 30, 2019

By Zirui Song 1P

The 6th Mexican Go Congress was a lifetime experience. I was both instructor and referee. I played simuls every afternoon, gave a lecture on life and death problems, and tried to review as many Congress games as possible. While only there three days, I hope my teaching could indeed offer them some insights into the thinking of a pro-level player when playing the game. They were polite and respectful when asking me to review the games, and whenever I saw them understand and gain from my teachings, I would genuinely feel really happy and fulfilled. They would laugh back at me, too.

Though my perspective is different from a player, I was not alienated from the exciting event at all. The passion for the game of go connected everyone at the Congress. On the last day, many people brought their own boards and started playing at the front door of the building. To be honest, I envy their passion towards the game sometimes. Whenever they finished, they would never directly put the stones back into the boxes before going back to the game to discuss the important fights or game-deciding moments. 

Emil, the president of the Mexican Go Association, and his girlfriend, Dafne, welcomed me to stay at their place during the Congress. They cared for my needs and gave me the most comfortable stay possible. All the other people at the event were really hospitable as well, and I feel bad for not remembering all their names. What I do remember is that every night after the congress games, we went to dinner, drank and talked for hours. On the last day, they insisted on walking with me to the Art Museum and Chinatown in Mexico City to show me the different facets that Mexico City has to offer. 

I sincerely hope that I can go back again.

With funding from the American Go Foundation, Zirui Song, 1P from Chicago, was the AGA representative at the Mexican Go Congress. 

-photos provided by Zirui Song. Report edited by Terry Benson.

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

Go Spotting: Hunter x Hunter

Tuesday July 30, 2019

Longtime EJ contributor Janice Kim recently sent along this screenshot “from my favorite anime, Hunter x Hunter. In this longer scene,  the King of the Chimera Ants learns Go from books, and takes on the national champion, winning after playing just ten games. His advisors had mentioned to him that Go is quite more difficult than chess or shoji (not agreeing, just reporting there :) and so he wanted a challenge while he’s waiting to take over the world. 


“This is from episode 102, fourth season I believe. The first three seasons are on Netflix, but you have to go on crunchyroll to see episodes from there.
The first episodes are a little slow, but there is a lot in there about training, that I’m perhaps somewhat hilariously extrapolating to Go, with I think good results.”

NGC announces Fall class schedule

Monday July 29, 2019

The National Go Center just announced its schedule of classes for the Fall. “This is the first time we have had a formal schedule of classes and we’re very excited about this step forward,” said Executive Director Gurujeet Khalsa. There will be a 6-week Saturday Children’s Beginner class for ages 6-12. This grew out of the Family Go program the NGC has been running for parents and children for the past two years. Josh Lee 6d will draw on his extensive experience at Family Go to lead the class. The kids will have a peer to look up to as well with Frederick Bao 5d assisting Josh fresh from his triumph at the US Open in Madison. “In another first for the NGC” says Khalsa, “we put an ad in Washington Parent magazine’s August issue,  a prime spot for finding youth enrichment activities.” All of the children will be getting a copy of the first volume of the Level Up! Series as a workbook also with fun manga comics explaining the game.

There will also be a 3-week Adult/Youth(13+) Beginner Class. “New folks have always found the NGC to be a welcoming place to learn from others,” reports Khalsa, “but many people have expressed an interest in a class just for beginners to get started with go, and this is for them.” Daniel Chou 6d has volunteered to teach a 6-week class for Kyu level players to help them move towards Shodan and get more enjoyment out of playing. Rounding out the Fall schedule will be two monthly workshops led by Yuan Zhou. Zhou’s popular workshops are becoming part of the NGC curriculum with registration through the NGC website.

The NGC Classes page has links to all the classes with details and registration information. Says Khalsa, “This is just the beginning. We’ll be looking to expand in a Winter term with more classes, especially follow-ons for those taking beginner lessons.”

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

Transatlantic Professional Go Team Championship Game 6, 7 & 8 videos posted

Saturday July 27, 2019

The video games and commentaries for Games 6, 7 and 8 of the recent Transatlantic Professional Go Team Championship have now been posted (see below). Commentators are as follows:
Game 6 – Eric Lui 1p vs. Pavol Lisy 2p; commentary by Andy Liu 1p and Michael Wanek
Game 7 – Artem Kachanovskyi 2p vs. Eric Lui 1p; commentary by Cornell Burzo 7d and Stephen Hu
Game 8 – Ryan Li 1p vs. Ilya Shikshin 3p; commentary by Stephanie Yin 1p and Stephen Hu

This was a €10,000 EUR, single-elimination team tournament in which five AGA professionals matched up against five EGF professionals.
Credits: Logo: Maria Chaplina; Layout: Mieke Narjes; Graphics: Stephen Hu; Producer: Michael Wanek; North American TD: Hajin Lee; European TD: Natalia Kovaleva; Tournament Sponsors: AGA & EGF
To support this tournament and future tournaments like it, please support the AGA & EGF with donations or membership.

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