The CATFISH CLASSIC
The Wingfield High School Chess Team traveled to the "Catfish Classic" in Belzoni, Mississippi this past Saturday. Though our top player only garnered 3.0 points and most of the rest of our guys recorded only 1 or 2 points, we had a GREAT time, saw some old friends and proved to be one of the most closely-knit teams in attendance.
The day began, gathering in the school parking lot and hopping into what we affectionately call the "Big Burgundy Beast" -- the 18 passenger van proudly purchased by my husband and I this summer for events just such as this.
The kids were focused in early rounds but took some tough losses. Different this year compared to last, the students notated their games and went over mistakes after rounds. Last year, we would just sorta, move pieces around and hope for the best... but after realizing our potential, the Wingfield Team is training on Chess.com Tactics & Lessons, reviewing game notations and discussing theory with each other.
Above: Avery (right) is our newest competitor. He's a freshmen who had found success playing chess during his elementary years in a gifted program. But as with so many kids from Jackson, MS... after the gifted program stopped in 6th grade, he had no other outlet with which to pursue the game, until now. Avery had the classic "small fish in a big pond" experience, unable to win a game, but he was probably the most jovial and energetic of all our players that day.
Above: William (far right) drew the eventual tournament K-12 winner in Round 1. William finished the day with 3.0 points.
Above: The Team Picture after our favorite part of each tournament trip -- EATING AT CHINA BUFFET! On the first row, far left is my trophy husband, Chris Thrasher (xguardian on Chess.com) graciously serving as chauffeur for the day.
Perhaps the most impressive performance of the day went to Kamarie (pictured below) who fought tooth-and-nail to the the bitter end of a seemingly lost game that prevented him from eating lunch with the team. When we returned with his meal we were overjoyed, if not shocked to find that he'd managed to pull a draw out of the perilous position we'd last seen him in... and for all of his hard work, he had just enough time to stand up, stretch, receive his food in hand, sit back down and start Round 3!
Kamarie, a senior leader, finished the day with 2.5 points.
We're so very proud of the team and eager to get back to training in the upcoming weeks.
Thanks again to all of our followers and supporters.