(February 16-18, Twin Falls, ID)
Jason Evers (1761) of Fruitland, Idaho is the 2008 Idaho State Chess Champion! This is the first of what we hope is many trips to the Closed for Jason. His score of 5.0/6 won the title outright in view of his sixth round win over nine year old phenom Luke Harmon-Vellotti (1815) of Boise. Evers did not lose a single game, collecting four wins and two draws on his way to the championship, while defeating the number two and number three seeded players in the fifth and sixth rounds to ice the victory.
Victor Watts (1688) of Pocatello took home the second place overall hardware with a very nice 4.5/6 result. Watts collected four wins and a well earned draw with the top seed and fifteen - time Idaho State Champion Larry Parsons (2034) of Boise.
Mark Anderson (1696) of Moscow was the third place overall finisher with a 4.0/6 tally. Anderson won the trophy on tiebreaks from the other two players with 4.0/6 (Luke Harmon-Vellotti and Larry Parsons) due to his stronger strength of opposition.
The real story of the event, though, was the attendance by ten - time Idaho Chess Champion Glen Buckendorf (1800) of Buhl to his FIFTIETH IDAHO CLOSED IN A ROW!! As far as I know this is unprecedented in USCF history. Buckendorf participated in his first Closed in 1947 and then set another incredible mark by winning state championships FIFTY YEARS APART, first in 1951 and again in 2001. This year, his health only allowed him to play in three rounds and all he did was produce THREE WINS which won him the Top Senior trophy! Remarkable.......
Oh, and one other thing... for the last two years, Glen has decided that he needs to share his chess experience with other players and has generously selected books from his private library to present to the top four players who did not receive a trophy. Inside the cover of each book it is carefully autographed by Glen with the words "Glen Buckendorf - Ten Time Idaho State Chess Champion" Upon finding this out, former Idaho State Champion and two - time Idaho Scholastic Champion Garrett Reynolds quipped, "I would rather have one of those books than any trophy........" If anyone has ANY sense of history and accomplishment, those who receive these books should cherish them as a gift from THE Giant of Idaho Chess.
Truly this gentleman of the chessboard deserves unparalleled recognition not only for his achievements over the board, but also for his vigorous support for all aspects of chess in Idaho these last 65 years......... BRAVO GLEN.......... Here's to you............
Other winners in this years Closed were as follows:
Top Expert - Larry Parsons (2034, 4 points)
This years version of the Idaho Closed was held at "The Catering Room" in Twin Falls. The room was very nostalgic and comfortable. The people at Norm's Cafe, who are the owners of the site, were great hosts and kept us supplied with fuel (also known as muffins, coffee and water) plus offered their business for post game analysis. Many thanks to them for their help and great food! I would also like to thank all of those who helped with the behind the scenes rigors involved with putting on a chess tournament and to assistant TD Jeff Roland. A special "Thank You" goes out to all the players who chose to attend this historical event. You made my job as TD very easy indeed. See you all next year in Twin Falls for the 2009 Idaho Closed!