The 1995 U.S. Open in Concord, Calif., ended in an easy victory for the nation’s hottest player, Alex Yermolinsky. The Ohio grandmaster scored an excellent 10 1/2-1 1/2 in the 528-player event, earning the first prize of $5,000. This has been a very successful summer for Yermolinsky, who collected $12,000 for winning the World Open last month.
Yermolinsky went undefeated, giving up two draws and taking a half-point bye in the first tround. He nearly clinched first place by defeating his closest rival, SM Omar Cartagena, in the tenth round, then finished by drawing IM Walter Shipman and beating IM Larry Kaufman. Shipman, SM Ron Burnett, master Eugene Perelshteyn and SM David Gliksman shared second place at 9 1/2-2 1/2. Perelshteyn, who played only the second week of the tournament, was credited with 3 1/2-2 1/2, then won six consecutive games. Gliksman upset six-time U.S. champion Walter Browne, who dropped out with a score of 5 1/2-2 1/2.
Next at 9-3 were Cartagena, SM John Curdo, GM Arnold Denker, SM Gregory Hjorth, SM Rich Kelson, master Isaak Margulis and IM Larry Remlinger. Perhaps the one-game-per-day schedule helped experience triumph over youth; Shipman (age 66) and Curdo (63) achieved their best results ever in a national tournament, while Denker (81) played several games in the energetic style that made him U.S. champion in 1944.
Charles Gelman of Virginia won the concurrent Denker Tournament of High School Champions, scoring 4 1/2- 1/2. Andranik Maissian, the Southern California representative, made a respectable showing at 3-2.
The Southern California Open, one of the two state championships run annually by the Southern California Chess Federation, takes place Sept. 2-4 at the Holiday Inn, 7000 Beach Blvd. in Buena Park. Players may enter the Open or Amateur (under 1800) sections and may choose the three-day or the 2 1/2-day schedule. The winner of the Open section becomes state champion and earns a spot in the 1996 invitational state championship.
The SCCF Booster Open, a tournament for unrated players and those rated below 1200, will be held at the same site on Sept. 4. For all of the details, call Randy Hough at (818) 282-7412 or Paul Shannon at (714) 891-6398.
Ron Hermansen and John Williams, who drew their fourth-round encounter, won the first tournament at the Calabasas Chess Club with scores of 5 1/2- 1/2. The club, which meets Tuesday evenings at the Calabasas Swim and Tennis Center, 23400 Park Sorrento in Calabasas Park, will begin another six-round tournament on Aug. 29. For information, call Michael Keating at (818) 222-2182.