2018 Blitz Championship
Touch move! Illegal move! Flag fall! I resign! Checkmate! All of these helped players win their games in the ICA Blitz Championship held on the weekend of February 3. Last year, the event was moved into the late summer due to snow, but the weather cooperated and downtown Boise was nearly 60+ degrees this year. The Blitz Championships were held in the Computer Science Building at Boise State University and housed 30 players - 23 of which were scholastic players! Indeed it was a scholastic day where the kids dominated and made the adults hang on for dear life. Even though adults occupied 2nd - 3rd place, all the top boards had scholastic players on them for the last round. Board one had Kevin Xu pitted against Christopher Baumann despite the fact that Kevin had secured the championship position the previous round. Nobody could surpass his score. Players played 8 double-rounds of G/5; d0 matches that kept adrenaline pumping for nearly 4 hours straight with no breaks for lunch. In fact, the excitement was so elevated with speed that a spectator actually punched the clock in one match, causing him to be ejected from spectating in future rounds! The poor soul just got caught up in the game and I imagine he dreamed he was playing it. Dian Xu was tournament director and kept rounds moving smoothly with his son Kevin Xu also helping him organize the event. Kevin will be featured on the cover of the next Northwest Chess Magazine for becoming the Blitz champion.