Virginia Scholastic Chess Association Newsletter

May 11, 2010

This newsletter is sent to families who participate in Virginia Scholastic Chess Association tournaments. The VSCA is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization dedicated to promoting scholastic chess in central and southeastern Virginia. Please email to subscribe, unsubscribe or change your address.

Grafton Spring Chess Festival (Grades K-12)

Registration is now open for the Grafton Spring Chess Festival, to be held Saturday, May 29, 2010 at Grafton Middle School in York County, Virginia. In addition to the VSCA scholastic tournament, the Grafton Festival will also include an adult quads event, hosted by the Virginia Chess Federation (VCF). The VCF is also hosting a non-rated Parents and Friends tournament.

The scholastic tournament is open to students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Players are divided into 2 sections based on their grade in school: Trophies will be awarded to the the top eight (8) individuals and to the top six (6) school teams in each section. Advance registration for the scholastic event is online only, and closes at 7:00 AM Thursday morning, May 27. Current membership in the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) is required for all players.

The entry fee for the adult quads event is $20, with cash prizes for 1st place and 2nd place in each quad. USCF membership is required. Online registration is not available for the quads event. To enter, email VCF president Mike Hoffpauir, or sign up at the Registration Desk on the day of the tournament.

Please visit for information and to register online for the scholastic tournament.

Fork Union Scholastic Results

46 scholastic players participated in the 15th annual Fork Union Scholastic tournament at Fork Union Military Academy on April 10. The K-3 and K-5 sections were combined with separate awards, and the K-8 and K-12 sections were combined with separate awards. In the K-3 section, Taha Shaikh won the first-place trophy by tie-breaks over Nicholas Xie. Taha and Nicholas each finished with 2.5 points in 4 rounds. Echo Lake Elementary School won the K-3 first-place team trophy. Adam Tyler won first place in K-5 with a perfect score of 4.0 points. Colonial Trail Elementary School won the K-5 first-place team trophy. In the K-8 section, Jonathan Yu, a 4th grader playing up, won the first-place trophy with a perfect score of 4.0 points. Three Chopt Elementary School, with 4 players playing up, won the K-8 first-place team trophy. In the K-12 section, Charles Wang won the first-place trophy with a score of 3.0 points in 4 rounds. The host team from Fork Union Military Academy won the K-12 first-place team trophy.

Congratulations to all of these players and to all of our tournament participants. Complete tournament results are available at

National Elementary (K-6) Results

Congratulations to the K-6 team from Moody Middle School of Henrico County who recently took 2nd place in the nation in the National Elementary (K-6) tournament, held in Atlanta on May 7-9. The Moody team of Tip Wolfe (5.5 points, 9th place individual), Vikas Rajasekaran (5.5 points, 14th place), Abhishek Penumala (4.5 points) and Vignesh Rajasekaran (4.0 points) narrowly missed first place by 1.5 points.

Tournament Registration and Entry Fees

Advance registration for VSCA tournaments is ONLINE ONLY at, and closes at 7:00 AM on the Thursday before the tournament. In order to accurately process entries, we cannot accept mail, phone or e-mail registrations. The advance registration entry fee of $7 may be paid by mail (preferred) or at the tournament. Players who do not register before the 7:00 AM Thursday deadline can register at the tournament between 8:00 and 8:45 am on Saturday, but they will need to pay the late entry fee of $14. Players who register later than 8:30 am on Saturday may or may not be paired for the first round, depending on the number of late registrations.

Tournament Check-in

In order to help us complete registration and start our tournaments on time, please check in at the registration desk by 8:45 am, even if you have mailed in your payment. This will minimize the number of names that we have to call in order to check attendance, and will also allow our volunteers to close registration and balance the books earlier. Players arriving after 8:45 am (8:30 am if you have not registered in advance) will risk not being paired for the first round.

If you have registered online, but later find that you will not be able to attend, please email by Friday night so that we can withdraw your name. If you have to change your plans at the last minute and will be absent or late, please try to let someone else know so they can tell us at registration.

USCF Membership

Current membership in the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) is REQUIRED in order to play in VSCA tournaments, except for sections specifically designated as non-rated. In order to avoid delays on Saturday, please join or renew directly with USCF at Please do not mail a paper application form or check to USCF, since this may cause delays in processing your membership. If you are unable to join or renew online, please plan to fill out a membership application at the tournament. You can check membership status at The U.S. Chess Federation maintains a national database of ratings (relative playing strengths) for adult and scholastic players. In order to update the ratings following each tournament, all players in the tournament must be current USCF members.

Please visit our website at for the latest news and information.