Saturday, August 27, 2011

Let the games begin!

Very excited about the new USCL season. We are bringing back the core of our team (Giorgi, Pascal, Irina and Fed) on the top boards and going with some fresh faces on 3 and 4.

The New Knights

NM Leif Pressman (2232 USCL / 2381 USCF / 2301 FIDE) and I will be sharing time on board 3 for the Knights. Leif has been a very active player at the Marshall Chess Club, having notched over 1200 games as a NM. He recently tied for 6th at the World Open U2400 (won by former Knight FM Alex Ostrovskiy) and notched a solid 50% at the New York International. The last 9 months have seen him gain 160 FIDE points and he'll be a formidable weapon for New York.

NM Justus Williams (2165 USCL / 2265 USCF / 2172 FIDE) returns to the Knights after a short, though impressive debut season in 2010. Since then, he's won the National K-8 Championship and shared the NY State High School Championship (along with teammate Ben Gershenov, winning their individual encounter). His crushing performance (13.5/14) at the blitz championship of the latest running of the US Chess School ( should put everyone on notice!

NM Michael Bodek (2199 USCL / 2334 USCF / 2207 FIDE) is the 2011 US Cadet Champion, having scorched the field with a 5.5/7 score, losing only to co-Champ New Jersey's FM Arthur Shen. He continued his hot streak during the first half of the recently completed Metropolitan Chess International, scoring +2 =4 -0 against IM-level opposition, before losing some steam at the end. He's gained a remarkable 1005 USCF rating points (1329 -> 2334) since January 2008.

NM Ben Gershenov (2072 USCL / 2279 USCF / 2168 FIDE) is the lowest rated member of the of last September. He's gained over 200 USCF points in the last 12 months and, like Leif, scored 50% at the New York International. His recent trip to Europe alone netted him 61 FIDE points and we look for this reigning NY State High School co-Champion to be a dangerous board 4.

Last but not least is John Fernandez (2134 USCL / 2129 USCF / 2156 FIDE), an original Knight (his scrappy draw against Ilya Krasik was a critical part of the Week 1 draw against Boston back in 2005, the Knights' first-ever match!) who returns after a 5 year hiatus. John co-organized the successful and long-running New York Masters tournaments with league president Greg Shahade.

1 comment:

David said...

wow, sounds like another scary team. good luck, Matt!