The Maryland Sweet 16 is an annual invitational tournament for the top 16 scholastic chess players in Maryland that is usually held in February at UMBC. The Champion of the Maryland Sweet 16 will receive a 4-year scholarship (covering tuition & fees, but not room & board) to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), valued at $35,000.
Players in the Rally section at MCA scholastic tournaments can earn Rally points, with the top players qualifying to compete in the Maryland Sweet 16.
Qualifying Rules for the Maryland Sweet 16
1.Qualifiers must be residents of Maryland.
2.Qualifiers must compete in all rounds of the Rally section of at least 1 MCA scholastic tournament during the scholastic year in which the Sweet 16 is held. However, if a player were to receive a 1-point bye because there were an odd number of players in a particular round at that tournament, then the MCA would consider the player to have competed in that round. Only in the event of an emergency may a player may be excused from competing in at most 1 round of that tournament. The emergency-exemption claim must be pre-approved by the Chief Tournament Director. Furthermore, after the tournament the player must submit to the MCA Scholastic Director documentation (a doctor’s note, a relative’s obituary, etc.) that affirms the legitimacy of the emergency-exemption claim. If the tournament is cancelled by the MCA, then the player must compete in 1 of the remaining Rally tournaments. However, if the tournament were to cancelled by the MCA, if the tournament could not be rescheduled before the Maryland Sweet 16, and if the tournament were the final Rally tournament before the Maryland Sweet 16, then the player will have fulfilled the Maryland Sweet 16’s tournament-participation requirement, by virtue of being considered to have competed in the cancelled Rally tournament. However, Rally points will not be allocated to a player in this situation.
3.The formula for determining Rally points accrued per tournament is: the number of players in the Rally section of an MCA scholastic tournament divided by the player’s place in the Rally section.If there are ties, then each player with the same score (the number of tournament points) receives the average number of Rally points earned by all of the players who tied but placed differently, according to tiebreaks.(Players from out of state count toward determining Rally points, but they do not count in the Rally point standings. )
4.The 16 Qualifiers are the top 6 players by USCF rating and the 10 players with the highest number of Rally points (excluding the top 6 players by rating).The March Rating Supplement (which includes the results of tournaments submitted by the first Friday in February) is used to determine the Qualifiers by rating. The 2 players with the next highest number of Rally points are the Maryland Sweet 16 Alternates.
5.Sweet 16 players are required to compete in all 4 rounds of the tournament, with exceptions made only in the cases of a medical emergency or another extraordinary situation.Failure to play in all 4 rounds affects place and tiebreaks for the other players; so, if a Qualifier cannot commit to all 4 rounds, then she must decline the MCA’s invitation to participate ASAP.That way, the MCA will have time to determine and notify an Alternate. A player who fails to compete in all 4 rounds without an excused absence, will be barred from participating in any future Sweet 16 tournament—or in MCA adult tournaments for 1 year, if the player is a high-school senior.
6.The winner of a Maryland Sweet 16 may not compete in subsequent Maryland Sweet 16s.
Updated: 2/28/2010 16:55
The winner of the 2010 Sweet 16 tournament and the UMBC Scholarship will come down to one game: James Pinkerton (2.5) vs Kevin Wang (3.0). Kevin Wang has draw odds to win the title. Heading into the final round of the 2010 16th Annual Sweet 16 tournament (3 rounds), the standings are as follows:
1: 3.0 - Kevin Wang (2193)
2: 2.5 - James Pinkerton (2052)
3-7: 2.0 - Charles Yang (2015); Benjamin Krause (1855); Srinivas Moorthy (1754); Gill Guo (2081); Tanner McNamara (1850)
8-9: 1.5 - Jeffrey Chang (1836); Ronald Best, Jr (1458)
10-14: 1.0 - Ramanuja Sreenivasan (1910); Dobryna Konoplev (1701); Alan Nguyen (1494); Saket Papaihgari (1437); Madeline Kim (1385)
15: 0.5 - Christopher Hazard (1227)
16: 0.0 - Jordan Best (1019)
Pairings / Results Round 4:
James Pinkerton (2.5) vs Kevin Wang (3.0)
Charles Yang (2.0) vs Gill Guo (2.0): 1/2
Benjamin Krause (2.0) vs Tanner McNamara (2.0): 1/2
Jeffrey Chang (1.5) vs Srinivas Moorthy (2.0)
Ramanuja Sreenivasan (1.0) vs Ronald Best Jr (1.0): 1-0
Dobryna Konoplev (1.0) vs Saket Papaiahgari (1.0)
Alan Nguyen (1.0) vs. Madeline Kim (1.0): 1/2
Jordan Best (0.0) vs Christopher Hazard (0.5)
Updated: 21 Feb 2010 with USCF March 2010 ratings (No change in Top 6).
With the Chestertown tournament completed on Sat 2/20, six Rally tournaments have been completed with a total of 40 Maryland players competing..See the standings at the end of this article.
*** NOTICE: UMBC has moved up the date of their Sweet 16 tournament - It is now scheduled for Feb 27-28 (two weeks earlier than usual). This has the unfortunate effect of eliminating the Feb 27 MCA Liberty Christian tournament as a Rally tournament.
The Sweet 16 Invitational is held concurrently with the UMBC Open in a separate section. Players will play four rounds with the same time controls (20/1; SD/1) and round times as the UMBC Open on Saturday and Sunday Feb 27-28 during Rounds 1, 2, 4,and 5. [Round 3 on Saturday evening is excluded]. Only eligible players who can commit to play all 4 rounds should play in the Sweet 16. We will contact all the Qualifiers and the top alternates in the next few days to determine the final field.
The Rally standings are as follows:
TOP 6 by USCF Ratings (Mar 2010):
1. Kevin Wang (2206)
2. Gill Guo (2076)
3. James Pinkerton (2057)
4. Charles Yang (2023)
5. Ramanuja Sreenivasan (1926)
6. Benjamin Krause (1855)
NEXT 10 Qualifiers by Rating Points (Final)
7. Karl Vicente (16.000 Rally Points)
8. Madeline Kim (14.967)
9. Tanner McNamara (13.333)
10. Dobryna Konoplev (12.510)
11. Saketh Papaiahgari (12.091)
12. Ronald Best, Jr (11.232)
13. Christopher Hazard (10.575)
14. Alan Nguyen (10.376)
15. Jeffrey Chang (9.527)
16. Srinivas Moorthy (9.038)
NEXT 6 (Alternates)
17. Michael Sklar (8.482)
18. Josev Aquino (7.838)
19. Jed Tan (5.302)
20. Derek Mizushima (5.253)
21. Steven Mullens (4.889)
22. Adip Bhargav (4.736)
Updated: 2/28/2010 13:50
After the first day of the 2010 16th Annual Sweet 16 tournament (2 round), the standings are as follows:
1-3: 2.0 - Kevin Wang (2193); Charles Yang (2015); Benjamin Krause (1855)
4-5: 1.5 - James Pinkerton (2052); Jeffrey Chang (1836)
6-11: 1.0 - Srinivas Moorthy (1754); Gill Guo (2081); Tanner McNamara (1850); Ramanuja Sreenivasan (1910); Alan Nguyen (1494); Dobryna Konoplev (1701)
12-13: 0.5 - Ronald Best Jr (1458); Christopher Hazard (1227)
14-16: 0.0 - Madeline Kim (1385); Jordan Best (1019); Sakat Papaiahgari (1437)
Pairings / Results Round 3 (clean sweep by White!):
Kevin Wang (2.0) vs Charles Yang (2.0): 1-0
James Pinkerton (1.5) vs Benjamin Krause (2.0): 1-0
Gill Guo (1.0) vs Jeffrey Chang (1.5): 1-0
Srinivas Moorthy (1.0) vs Ramanuja Sreenivasan (1.0): 1-0
Tanner McNamara (1.0) vs Dobryna Konoplev (1.0): 1-0
Ronald Best Jr (0.5) vs Alan Nguyen (1.0): 1-0
Saket Papaiahgari (0.0) vs Christopher Hazard (0.5): 1-0
Madeline Kim (0.0) vs Jordan Best (0.0): 1-0
After drawing James Pinkerton in the final game of the Sweet 16 tournament, Kevin Wang becomes the 2010 and 16th Maryland Sweet 16 Champion and is the winner of a UMBC chess scholarship covering tuition. Kevin is from Cabin John Middle School in Montgomery County and is the second 7th grade winner of the Sweet 16. Runnerup James Pinkerton is a junior at Montgomery Blair High School and is the 2009 Maryland High School Champion. This year's field was slightly stronger than last year's based on average player rating (1747 vs 1735) and median (1825 vs 1724).
Congratulations to all players who particapated and competed in this year's tournament!
Final Standings (in Tiebreak order)
1. Kevin Wang 3.5
2. James Pinkerton 3.0
3. Charles Yang 2.5
4. Benjamin Krause 2.5
5. Srinivas Moorthy 2.5
6. Gill Guo 2.5
7. Tanner McNamara 2.5
8. Jeffrey Chang 2.0
9. Ramanuja Sreenivasan 2.0
10. Dobryna Konoplev 2.0
11. Ronald Best Jr 1.5
12. Madeline Kim 1.5
13. Alan Nguyen 1.5
14. Saket Papaiahgari 1.0
15. Christopher Hazard 1.0
16. Jordan Best 0.5