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MCA Perry Hall Scholastic 2015
Saturday 24 October 2015, 09:30am - 05:00pm
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Perry Hall Middle School
4300 Ebenezer Road
Baltimore, MD 21236

Recent History of the Tournament, Site, and/or Date

Open to all K - 12 players from anywhere.

Players in the Varsity section who are Maryland residents can earn MD-Sweet-16 Varsity Points to qualify for the MD Sweet 16, an annual invitational tournament at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. The top 16 players who compete in at least 1 of MCA’s 8 scheduled MD-Sweet-16 qualifying tournaments from September - February, will qualify for the MD Sweet 16 on 2016.03.05-06. The MD-Sweet-16 Champion will receive a 4-year MD-Sweet-16 UMBC Chess Scholarship, valued at $44,024. (Additionally, there are 2 types of UMBC Chess Scholarships for which high-school seniors from any state are eligible.) The MD-Sweet-16 tournament-announcement page contains all tournament details.

Round 1 at 9:30 AM.  Subsequent rounds as soon as possible.

6 Sections & 42 Trophies (35 Individual & 7 Team)





Time Control





K - 12


G/90 +30


top under 1800


Junior Varsity

1200 - 1599

K - 12


G/30 +30

top under 1400



800 - 1199,

strong unrated HSers

K - 12


G/60 d5

top under 1000


Intermediate: HS & MS

under 800 or unrated

6 - 12


G/45 d5

top under 600


Intermediate: ES

under 800 or unrated

K - 5


G/45 d5

top under 600


Novice: ES

under 400 or unrated

K - 5


G/30 d5

top under 200




 X = the # of rounds in which a player plays 1 game against an opponent determined by Swiss-system pairings


 X = the # of minutes per game each player has to complete all of the player's moves (a player's initial base time)


 X = the # of seconds of delay that elapse before a player's base time begins to elapse, when the player is on move


 X = the # of seconds of increment added to a player's base time for each move


Which Section is Right for Your Player?

      • Sections are listed primarily in order of rating strength & secondarily in order of grade range.
      • Players who have never competed in a US-Chess-rated tournament (the vast majority of unrated players) are not eligible for the strongest sections.
      • A player's eligibility by rating for a section is determined primarily by the player's official/published US Chess rating during the month in which a tournament will be held. A player's official rating remains the same number throughout a month, because the US Chess Federation calculates a player's official rating only once per month. That is, a player's official rating does not change during a month, because a player's official rating throughout a month is what the player’s unofficial/unpublished rating was on the 3rd Wednesday of the previous month. Conversely, a player's unofficial rating can change an unlimited number of times per month, because US Chess calculates a player's unofficial rating a few hours after the conclusion of every US-Chess-rated tournament in which a player competes. When registering a player for a tournament in month X, apply the player's official rating in month X. When registering a player for a tournament in month X+1, apply the player's unofficial rating on the 3rd Wednesday of month X. Look up a player's official & unofficial US Chess ratings here.
      • Sections have a marginally flexible floor (at MCA scholastic tournaments), but an inflexible/hard ceiling (at all US-Chess-rated tournaments). So, a player may play up in a higher section, if the player's official rating is ≤ 50 points below that section's floor, and/or if the player's unofficial rating either is ≤ 50 points below or is above that section's floor. However, even if a player's unofficial rating is below a section's ceiling, the player may NOT play down in that section, if the player's official rating is above that section's ceiling.
      • If a player is registered for a section for which the player is ineligible by rating, then MCA (without notification) will move the player to the lowest section for which the player is eligible.
      • If there's a discrepancy between the grade & the section selected for a player during registration, then MCA (without notification) will pair the player in a section according to whichever is higher: the grade or the section. For example, a player designated as a 3rd grader but registered in the 5th-grade section, will remain in that section; conversely, a player designated as a 9th grader but registered in the 7th-grade section, will be moved to the 9th-grade section. Why? Because MCA considers it more fair to err on the side of pairing a player in a lower grade against players in higher grades, than of pairing a player in a higher grade against players in lower grades. To prevent your player from being paired in an incorrect section because of a registration error, please review both the registration-confirmation email you received from MCA & the Wallcharts below. Send corrections to MCA at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For more information about MCA tournaments, contact MCA at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

This tournament is supported generously by the Baltimore Kids Chess League.

Registered Players & Wallcharts

Tournament Registration Fee

      • $15 (Early), if completed by 11:59 PM, Tuesday, 2015.10.20 (online or received mail)
      • $25 (Regular), if completed by 7 PM, Thursday, 2015.10.22 (online)
      • $40 (Last-Minute), if completed by 6 AM, Saturday, 2015.10.24 (online) (half-point bye possible in Round 1)
      • $50 (At-the-Door), 8:30 - 9 AM, Saturday, 2015.10.24 (only if space is available; half-point bye likely in Round 1)

Registration by Mail

      • Include: player's name, US Chess ID #, US Chess expiration date, section, grade, school, phone #, email address, & check (written in ink & made payable to Maryland Chess Association).
      • Mail to: Maryland Chess Association, 1827 Thornton Ridge Road, Towson MD 21204-1841.

US Chess Membership

      • A player must have a current US Chess membership to compete in a US-Chess-rated tournament.
      • During a tournament a player without a current US Chess membership is ineligible to play, will not be paired in any round, & will receive a 0-point bye in all rounds, until the player purchases a new US Chess membership or renews an expired one, by filling out MCA's US-Chess-membership form in the Tournament Directors' room. A 0-point bye reduces a player's ability to win an individual trophy and a school's ability to win a team trophy.
      • A US Chess membership can be purchased online or by mail, along with registration for the tournament. If you’re purchasing by mail, then include: player's name, date of birth (mm/dd/yyyy), home address, gender, and US Chess ID # (if available). Select 1 of the options listed below [ages refer to the member’s age on the day of the tournament]:
            • ages 1 - 12, $17, Scholastic: Regular (12 months), Chess Life for Kids (online)
            • ages 13 - 15, $22, Youth: Regular (12 months), Chess Life for Kids (online)
            • ages 16 - 24, $26, Young Adult: Regular (12 months), Chess Life (online)

Which Players Are Required to Record Their Games?

      • Players in grades 4 - 12 must record (notate) their games, unless they are unable to. K - 3 players in all sections are exempt from the recording requirement.
      • Recording affords several benefits:
            • it helps to resolve disputes;
            • it discourages cheating;
            • it enables players to improve their skills through post-game analysis.

Do Players Need to Bring Anything?

      • Players do NOT need to bring any equipment. MCA will provide all necessary supplies: boards, pieces, scoresheets (for recording), and pencils. (MCA’s pencils might be dull and do not have erasers. If you want a sharp pencil with a good eraser, then bring your own.)
      • Players do NOT need to bring a clock; however, we encourage them to bring one. A game may be started without a clock, if neither player brings a clock to the board. Clocks can be purchased at the tournament.
      • Food (pizza, candy, soda, etc.) can be purchased at the tournament.

How to Register Online for an MCA Scholastic Tournament

Which US Chess Rating Determines the Section(s) in which a Player May or Must Play?

MCA’s Scholastic Team Policy

MCA’s Scholastic Bye Policy

MCA's Refund Policy & Fees for Registration Changes

Tournament Announcements before Round 1 & Section Schedules

Procedures, Rules, and Etiquette for Players and Spectators at an MCA Scholastic Tournament

Increment Time Control

Even when More Than 1 Player in a Section Can Achieve a Perfect Score, There Will Be No Major Variations; However, There Might Be Minor Variations. The following might be changed for any section, according to the number of players in the section: whether there are natural pairings (the norm at a Swiss-system tournament) or accelerated pairings in Rounds 1-2, and the number of trophies. In the rare instance of a section having an exceptionally low turnout, it might be merged with another section.

Tournament Results

How MCA Determines the Individual Winner of a Section when There’s a Tie for First Place

How to Find a Player’s New US Chess Rating after an MCA Scholastic Tournament

MCA's Social-Media Profiles

For further information, contact the Maryland Chess Association at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Location Perry Hall MS