MALONE — The Malone Chess Club aims to keep its Team Champions crown at the Upstate NY Chess Championships later this month.
The Scholastic Event, with teams from as far away as Watertown and Montreal, takes place from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, April 27, hosted by the Malone Club at Franklin Academy High School.
The Open Event, for ages 8 through 99, will take place May 11 at those same times.
Many of the best local scholastic chess players will compete on April 27.
“The annual event draws players from an area stretching from Watertown to Montreal, and competition is always fierce,” organizer Matthew Rogers said in a press release.
“I invite (the schools) to bring their top five players,” he explained in an interview Tuesday. “A lot of the tournaments you go to you have big, big groups of kids.
“I find with the smaller groups the games are a higher level of play; it’s more intense and pretty fun, too.”
As well, he said, the students get to know one another better in that setting.
Coach of the Malone Club, he said the scholastic teams have a kind of friendly rivalry.
Rogers said he expects Sabina Tinica from Montreal’s College Charlemagne will return for the April contest; she lost narrowly to Potsdam’s David Boyle, a three-time champion, last year.
Boyle has graduated and moved on, so Tinica and many others will try to capture his crown.
The Franklin Chess Club will try to reprise its victory last year as Team Champions.
“Holding the team title will be difficult for the Malone squad,” he said in the release. “Only two wins separated first from last in the team standings.”
The Upstate NY Open Championships in May has three separate age divisions and offers $900 in cash prizes. Both individual and team prizes (up to five players per team) are awarded, although competitors do not need to be part of a team to enter.