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Miller and Moerlien tie for 2023 Des Moines Open Title

By Bill Broich, NTD, IA


Thirty-five players participated in the 2023 Des Moines Open held June 10-11, 2023, at the Airport Holiday Inn in Des Moines, Iowa. Luke Miller (2201) and Sky Moerlien (2063) scored four points each to tie for first in this annual five Swiss System event. Seven players finished with 3.5 points to share third place and the under 2000 prizes which were combined. Mike Volz (1695) captured the under 1800 prize with 3 points. Andrew McIntyre (1316), Manjo Rudraboina (1395), and Luke Hengen (1407) each scored two points apiece to tie for the first place under 1600 prize.


The field was one of the largest and strongest of any recent open sections held in Des Moines that I organized. I consider this event a success if there are thirty players with twenty players rated 1800 or higher. This tournament had thirty-five players, twenty players rated 1800 or higher with a mean rating of 1781 and a median rating of 1819.


The fifth and final round determined who received the prize money. Volodymyr Baranovskyi (1952), a current Iowa State Co-champion, went into the final round with a perfect 4.0 score. Baranovskyi lost to Miller in the final round. As a result of this loss, he tied with six other players with 3.5 points. Moerlien defeated John Drippe (1980) in the final round to secure a piece of first place. Five players with 3 points drew their fifth-round games to finish with 3.5 points. Nick Lacroix (2041) drew with Alec Aimdilokwong (1910). Aayush Wadhwa (1925) drew with Ben Boaz (2020) and NM Tim McEntee (2201), a current Iowa State Co-champion, and Cub Noble (2013) played to a draw. Another important fifth-round game was won by Joseph Pregon (1916) who defeated Ben Darr (1869) to capture a piece of third place and the under 2000 prize. Voltz upset Jasmine Zulic (1903) in the final round to win the under 1800 prize and Hengen upset Brett Becker (1836) to capture a piece of the under 1600 prize.


Chess players from six different states competed in this event. Nineteen players were from Iowa, five from Nebraska and Kansas, three from Illinois, two from Missouri, and one from Minnesota.


Standings. 2023 Des Moines Open


# Name Rating St Rd 1 Rd 2 Rd 3 Rd 4 Rd 5

1 Puwit Sk Moerlien 2063 KS W23 W13 D5 D6 W12

2 Luke Miller 2201 IA W11 L7 W23 W22 W4

3 Nicholas Lacroix 2041 NE W19 W22 D4 D5 D9

4 Volodymyr Baranovskyi 1952 IA W17 W25 D3 W10 L2

5 Cassidy Noble 2013 IA W27 W18 D1 D3 D10

6 Aayush Wadhwa 1925 KS W28 D15 W31 D1 D8

7 Joseph Jef Pregon 1916 IA W32 W2 L10 D20 W18

8 Ben M Boaz 2020 MO D21 W30 D26 W11 D6

9 Alec Aimdilokwong 1910 IA W29 D10 W15 H--- D3

10 Tim R Mc Entee 2202 IA W16 D9 W7 L4 D5

11 Irene Jiao Fei 1819 IA L2 W24 W14 L8 W15

12 John Drippe 1980 KS L13 W17 W21 W26 L1

13 Michael Volz 1695 IA W12 L1 L20 W25 W22

14 Joseph Knapp 1976 NE L15 W28 L11 W16 W21

15 Rowan Riney 1693 IL W14 D6 L9 W19 L11

16 Brett Alan Becker 1836 IA L10 W32 D27 L14 W24

17 Sergey Popov 1676 IA L4 L12 D29 W34 W27

18 Ben J Darr 1869 IA W34 L5 H--- W27 L7

19 Ryan Peng Dong 1742 NE L3 H--- W30 L15 W29

20 Jacob Gregory Butcher 2038 IL H--- D21 W13 D7 U---

21 Thomas Gaul 1712 IA D8 D20 L12 W28 L14

22 Jasmin Zulic 1903 IA W24 L3 W25 L2 L13

23 Nicholas Risko 1801 MO L1 W29 L2 L24 W33

24 Luke O Hengen 1407 NE L22 L11 W32 W23 L16

25 Andrew McIntyre 1316 MN B--- L4 L22 L13 W34

26 Manoj Rudraboina 1395 IL W35 H--- D8 L12 U---

27 Chris Psenica 1695 IA L5 W34 D16 L18 L17

28 Jeffery A Solheim 1611 NE L6 L14 W33 L21 D30

29 Owen Comiskey 1475 IA L9 L23 D17 W32 L19

30 Owen Lin 1579 KS H--- L8 L19 D33 D28

31 Mark Kende 1800 IA H--- W33 L6 U--- U---

32 Samuel Mehlhaff 1549 KS L7 L16 L24 L29 B---

33 Yueze Huang 1262 IA H--- L31 L28 D30 L23

34 Daniel A Deyoung 1372 IA L18 L27 H--- L17 L25

35 George S Eichhorn 1900 IA L26 U--- U--- U--- U---


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