Sioux Falls Open

Only $20 entry fee with a $3500 guaranteed payout! What could make a chess tournament any better? A GM as TD? 20 grand prix points? A chance to play the current US chess champ? Who knows?

See the paid preregistered players here.

Print out a bunch of SFO handbills for your friends and bring a stack to your next club meeting.

See photos from last year or from the 2015 SFO.

De, Paul, and Yermo in 2015. Orginizer, Sponser, TD

 De, Paul, and Yermo

Nels Truelson wins the 2015 Paul Salem Sioux Falls Open with four and a half out of five. Mike Miller from Omaha won prize money, but left town without his winnings. If anyone knows how to reach him please have him contact De Knudson.Chess at the Great Plains ZooSend your games, photos, stories, and blog links to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

See the USCF crosstables.

Check back for more details.


There is a new Sheriff in town!

Serif Suljic, or "Sheriff" as many like to call him, is the 2010 Sioux Falls City Chess Champion. For years local resident Serif has competed in the Sioux Falls Championship and the Sioux Falls Open but never won first place until now. If you had to pick a word to describe the 26th Revival of the Sioux Falls Open Chess Tournament, the one that clearly comes to mind would be “tiebreak.” The 2010 version of the SF Open featured a new section (U600), but in the end all four sections were decided on computer-generated tiebreaks. Of course, this speaks volumes to the battles that were occurring in each section for the right to claim 1st place among all the 105 entrants in this tournament.
Thus, it was a tiebreak that determined the player who would be bestowed
the title of 2010 Sioux Falls City Chess Champion, and that player turned
out to be Serif “Sheriff” Suljic of Sioux Falls. His score of 4.0/5 was also
good enough for his share of the 1st place prize as he departed the SF Open
with a check in the amount of $150. Also going home with his $150 check,
was the player who tied Suljic with a score of 4.0/5, Curtis Carroll, the
reigning SD State Chess Champion.

Of course, it was also a tiebreak that determined the 1st place finisher in the
always competitive U1200 section, and the surprise of this year’s Open was
that a 6th grade middle school student from Patrick Henry MS in Sioux
Falls, Luke Rysavy, bested all the adults and the other scholastic players in
this section to claim his 1st place trophy. Rysavy has become an emerging
force in SD scholastic circles, and will be a force to reckon with at the
upcoming SD Scholastic Chess Championships on March 27th.
Garretson ES 4th grader Ryan Fick used a tiebreak to propel him to 1st place
in the U800, and with still another tiebreak deciding the day, it was
Harrisburg Explorer ES 4th grader Parker Brown who laid claim to the top
finish in the U600 section.

The 2014 Sioux Falls Open conducted by the Sioux Empire Chess Foundation at the Washington Pavilion was directed by GM Alex Yermolinsky and had 77 players across four sections participate.
In the top open section there was a three way tie for first place with Minnesota resident Richard Diaz taking home the trophy due to tie breaks losing only to Josiah Jorenby in round three.
Josiah Jorenby of Brookings and James Lenz of Sioux Falls settled for just their cash prize of $200 each with a score of 4 out of 5.
Jill Likens of Watertown won the under 1600 prize of $100 and the upset prize of $80 for her win against Lyle Hanson of Rapid City in round 4.  Jill's pretournament rating was 1422, 418 points less than Lyle's, but after the strong weekend of play her ratingwas boasted to 1518.
Andrew Braduson and Destiny Joenby split the under 1400 prize of $100.
Heath Mcintyre and Sabine Marks tied for first in the under 1200 section.
Luke Jensen won clear first in the under 900 section.
Tee Paterson had a perfect score of 6-0 to won the under 600 section
More details of the round by round action can be found in the crosstables at:


The 25th Revival of the Sioux Falls Open was held April 18-19, 2009 at the Labor Temple in Sioux Falls. SF Labor TempleThere were 48 players in 3 sections: Open, under 1200, and under 800.

The tournament was directed by Wes Schmidt.  Click here to see the crosstables of this event on the USCF website.

In the Open section Camilla Baginskaite took first with a perfect score of 5. Coming in second was Nels Truelson with 4 wins. Greg Waters took 3rd with a score of 3 games.

In the under 1200 section the players placed in this order:

1st Robert Boland

2nd Carter Huber

3rd Jordan Waters

4th Demitre Ecoffey


In the under 800 section Nathaniel Boland and Devante Millar tied for 1ast and 2nd place as Dylan Collins and Daniel Matzner tied for 3rd and 4th.


Winner of the open section was Ted Belanoff of California with a perfect score of 5-0. Ted has been criss-crossing the country and played rated games in almost every state in the past year.

Ted Belanoff- First Place, $250 + trophy
Kevin Gaustad- Second Place, $150
Nels Truelson & Vasanta Wettasinha- Third Place, tied split $100 -
Luke Rysavy & Sigurd Rydland- top U1600 tied split $100
Destiny Jorenby & Mark Hansen- top 1400 or unrated tied split $100

Cross tables of the tournament are at:

Games will be added to Please send yours in pgn format if you have not already done so.

See photos of the event here:


2008 Sioux Falls Open Results:

(Event Summary at

The 24th Revival of the Sioux Falls Open. Chess Tournament was held on April 19-20, 2008 at Sioux Falls Labor Temple. Sixty two players participated in the tournament. Master Nels Truelson retained the title of Sioux Falls City Champion by being the SF resident with the highest score and he also won the tournament with a score of 4.5 points. The following teams and individuals won cash prizes, trophies or medals in the tournament.

Nels Truelson brings the title home with a perfect score (5-0) in the 2013 Sioux Falls Open. Sixty-two participants played over four sections with twenty -two competing in the open section. Second place went to Lary Rust of Clevland, OH who lost only to Nels in the fourth round. Third place went to Corey Butler of Marshall, MN who won in rounds 1, 2, and 5 but lost to Nels in round 3 and had drawn Dale Mach in round 4.
Alexander Fuhs, Mike Fuhs, and Dylan Steinwand tied for first in the under 1200 with 3 out of 4 wins.
In the under 900 section Lennon Richart Keller won with a score of 5 of 6. Luke Jensen took 2nd and John Helmueller and Adelyn Diaz tied for third.
David Guarraci won the under 600 section with 5.5 of 6 and Jordan Klein and Nobel Nothstine tie for second with 5 of 6 games.
Held at the Washington Pavilion in Sioux Falls wiith GM Yermolinsky as Chief TD and GM Suat Atalik acting as Chief Arbiter of the Open Section.

Crosstables for the 2013 SFO seen at:
Check back for more info. If you were there then please share you games and photos by sending them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Attachments of pgn preferred for games and jpeg for  HQ photos in multiple emails is fine.

 If you are not a current SDCA member you can view a fine game played by Jerry John Casteel and Lary Rust with annotation by Suat Atalık.

If you are a current member then you should be able to view the games from the 2013 SFO using the (user/password combo) given to you when you paid for your current SDCA membership.

2007 SIOUX FALLS OPEN  (200704223351)
Event Dates   2007-04-21 thru 2007-04-22
Sponsoring Affiliate     SIOUX EMPIRE CHESS CLUB  (A6008758)
Chief  TD     WESLEY D SCHMIDT  (10374481)
3 Section(s,  45 Players

See cross tables at:

Members of the Augustana College Chess Club and the Sioux Empire Chess Foundation worked hard to pull off other successful Sioux Falls Open. Just click to see the games or photos.

The annual Sioux Falls Open Chess Tournament was held on the weekend of March 12-13, 2011, at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to decide the 2011 Sioux Falls City Chess Champion. The event was the 27th annual revival of this tournament that actually has its origins in the 1960’s, and a clear favorite entered this year’s version of the SF Open with the entry of WGM Camilla Baginskaite in the open section of the tournament.

Event Dates:     2006-04-22 thru 2006-04-23
Sponsoring Affiliate     SIOUX EMPIRE CHESS CLUB  (A6008758)
Chief  TD     WESLEY D SCHMIDT  (10374481)
3 Sections,  60 Players

See cross tables at: