Chess Champions Win Big

Pictured Left to Right: Luke Fitzgerald, Patrick Herrin, Liam Slattery, Dave Carter, Mateo Dienz-del Rio, Simon Safiero and Patrick Slattery. See story page 9.

Queen City Chess Club (QC^3) players and South Burlington residents rose to the top of the ranks of more than 150 scholastic chess players from across Vermont at the 25th Annual John Balch Memorial Vermont State Chess Tournament, held recently in Berlin.

The club regulars produced two state champions this year. Mateo Dienz-del Rio, of Shelburne, won kindergarten whereas Luke Fitzgerald, of South Burlington, won second grade. South Burlington resident, Ragulan Sivakumar, won the fourth grade and South Burlington resident Gabe Katz, won middle school. Gabe’s middle school title comes with an invitation to attend nationals in Tacoma, Washington in August. His efforts also paved the way for a Tuttle Middle School State Chess Championship.

Michael Cafiero, of South Burlington, won second place in fourth grade and Jack Morgan, of Shelburne, finished right behind in third place. Other third place finishers included: Liam Slattery, of South Burlington, in kindergarten; Magnus Ames, of Burlington, in second grade and Sajani Sivakumar, of South Burlington, for middle school.

Simon Cafiero, of South Burlington, won fourth in the first grade and Eli Hinds, Vermont Commons School, finished in fourth for middle school. Ryan Anderson, of South Burlington, finished in fifth place for fourth grade and Bishop Asaro, of Burlington, finished in seventh place. Patrick Herrin, of Essex, finished in 10th place for third grade. Zach Hinds, of Grand Isle, finished 11th place in 5th Grade. Patrick Slattery and Kian Arani, both of South Burlington, and CeCe Hinds, Grand Isle, also had impressive showings.

QC^3 meets on Saturdays, starting at 9:30, in the Cafe at Healthy Living and includes players from throughout the region and at all experience levels. QC^3 will continue to meet in preparation for the final scholastic competition of the year on May 27th in Montreal. During the summer, the team also meets at the Farmer’s Market in Burlington at the same time. Please contact Paul Fitzgerald at 324-8450 or before attending to confirm time, location and to make sure enough boards are present.

Several of the children have also been playing with The Burlington Chess club, which meets at the Faith United Church off Dorset Street. This is an adult club with a weekly tournament on Thursday evenings from 7:30–9:30 pm. The Burlington Chess Club is open to all levels of play. Anyone interested in the Burlington Chess Club should contact Dave Carter at 324-1143 or email

SOURCE: Paul Fitzgerald

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