Davis/Sacramento Go Club

Volume 4 Issue 3 - October 1998

Next Tournament:

Membership Update

As of 9/15/98, we have 30 paid members, the same as 1997. The club welcomes renewing members Gary Hynes, Rich Newbold, and Ron Harris.

New Playing Site

Some members have begun playing at the Galleria, 29th and J in Sacramento on Tuesday evenings from 6 to 10 pm.

1998 Numbers:





Number of members:



Davis/Sacramento Go Club
c/o Frank Berkenkotter
Box 4, Guinda, CA 95637

The Club Committee:

Frank Berkenkotter


Will Haynes


Steve Burrall


Fred Hopkins




On Sept. 12th, the D/SGC held its third tournament of 1998 at CSUS in Sacramento. Ten players played as one group and results split into 2 groups. In Division I, Jeff Newmiller, 2k, broke a 3-way tie at 3-1 with Charles So and Frank Berkenkotter.

In Division II, Jeff Murphy was the clear winner with Crawford and fast rising John Low tied for second at 2-2.

Division I

  1. Newmiller 2k


  • Charles So 3k
  • 3-1

  • Berkenkotter 2k
  • 3-1

  • Haynes 1k
  • 2-2

  • Yen Su 2k
  • 1-3

    Division II

    1. Murphy 4k


  • Crawford 7k
  • 2-2

  • John Low 9k
  • 2-2

  • Newbold 4k
  • 1-3

  • Kreiss 8k
  • 0-4

    Go Clocks

    We have received 12 go clocks from Lawrence Gross, the Western Region VP for the AGA. We wish to express our thanks to the Ing Foundation, the American Go Association, and Larry Gross for these clocks. This means that we will no longer need to borrow clocks from the Bay area for our tournaments.

    The Club Championships Standings

    The club gives a free membership and a small cash prize to the players in Division I and II with the most wins. You must be a member and play in 3 or more tournaments in the year. Last year's winners were Steve Burrall, 4D, with 10 wins, and Dean Sniegowski, 2k, with 11 wins.

    Division I

    1. F. Berkenkotter 2k

    7 wins

  • J. Newmiller 2k
  • 7 wins

  • S. Burrall 4d
  • 6 wins

  • W. Haynes 1k
  • 5 wins

    Division II

    1. J. Murphy 4k

    9 wins

  • R. Newbold 4k
  • 7 wins

  • G. Crawford 8k
  • 5 wins

  • M. Burrall 11k
  • 5 wins

    A Go Autobiography

    by Jeff Newmiller

    I was introduced to the game of Go by reading "Shibumi" (by Trevanian) in about 1979. (I was fascinated to read the piece in the Spring 1998 issue of American Go Journal about Trevanian's exposure to the game.) I knew very little of the rules of the game until about 1981 when I found an abandoned copy of "The Game of Go: The National Game of Japan" by Arthur Smith along with a folding board and a set of plastic stones and bowls. I didn't actually encounter anyone who would play the game with me until I noticed (and signed up for) Frank Berkenkotter's Experimental College class on the game in 1987 or '88.

    I had been intrigued by chess as a teenager, but that game did not really capture my interest the way Go eventually did. Upon discovering the book and game set in 1981, I had asked my father to play with me and he declined but told me a story about the game. He had been on a trip with an elderly Japanese man who had badgered him into playing a few games. Unfortunately, my father had been utterly unable to fathom it, and had sorely disappointed his (bored) companion. For some reason this story, coupled with the role it played in "Shibumi", left me with a vivid curiosity about the game long before I was actually able to play it.

    After I took Frank's class and started playing at the Roma, I started to get concerned about signs of addiction (dreaming about patterns, etc.), and I intentionally avoided playing regularly for a few years. However, about the time I passed 12 kyu in 1992 I started working at a new job in San Ramon. A co-worker there (John Berdner) expressed an interest in the game, and he started monopolizing my lunch-hours in order to learn the game from me. I think I owe much of my improvement from 12 to 7 kyu to the frequency of our games during that time. He has since moved on to other employment, but he irregularly travels from his home in Nevada City to our Thursday nights and to our tournaments now as an 8 kyu.

    So far, my moment of Go fame was the May 1994 DSGC tournament. I was promoted from 9k to 7k, won Division III, and ended up playing and winning a 9-stone playoff game against Jun Kong 3D for the prize of a Chronos clock donated by Tim Jeans. Tim had stipulated that the clock be awarded to an undefeated champion in the hope that it would entice us for a few tournaments (oh well!). Since Jun and I were both undefeated in our divisions, we played what seemed to me to be a nearly even game (in spite of my handicap!) until I killed his "dragon".

    (To be continued next issue.)

    Dues Payments

    Please make checks payable to Frank Berkenkotter, not the club, as a club bank account would be too expensive.

    Michael Redmond Cup and Awards for Go Teachers

    The Redmond Cup is part of a program to encourage youth Go in the US originated by Michael Redmond and his family. Youth Go players must fill out a form to compete. For more information, contact None Redmond at 5931 Wymore Way, Sacramento, CA 95822.

    E-mail: nonechin@nccn.net., or Frank Berkenkotter. There is also a "Go Teacher of the Year" award. You or someone you know might qualify.

    Simultaneous with Ned Phipps, 6 dan - Oct 10

    by F. Berkenkotter

    While playing a stronger player is a competitive challenge, it is also and educational oppor-tunity to ask how a very strong player sees things about strategy. In this simul., we will have much time for game reviews and asking questions, and we hope it will aid us in our lack of opportunity to play Dan level players. We would like to have 2 simuls a year, but our participation is essential to their continualnce. It will be held at the Davis library. As in the past, there will be a$8 fee to play and Ned Phipps said he will play up to 10 opponents.

    U. S. Go Congress 1998

    by Will Haynes

    The U. S. Go Congress was held from Aug. 2 to 8 at St. John's University in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Burrall family, Yoshi Swada, and Will Haynes attended from the Sacramento area. Mathew won 2nd place in the Children's Handicap Div. 1 Tournament and Kristen won 2nd place in the 9-12 kyu section of the US Open. Zhu-Jiu Jiang won the North American Masters, Jong Moon Lee won the Ing Invitational, Ned and JoAnne Phipps won the Pair Go title, and Jie Li, 6d, won the US Open 6 Dan section.

    Next year the US Go Congress will be in San Francisco.

    Report on the Euro-Go Congress in Romania

    by Frank Berkenkotter

    The European Congress was literally on the beach of the Black Sea at Constanta, Romania. My trip began in Istanbul for a few days, and then by bus via Bulgaria to Romania. Enroute we were trreated to a 6 hour wait on the Bulgarian border for customs during which the bus slowly filled with cigarette smoke and the charm of Turkish music wore off as we were kept in the bus for security reasons.

    I attended only half of the congress due to an information glitch in which many players didn't realize that the schedule has been moved up one week. In the open competition, Lee Hyuk, 7d, last year's winner from Moscow, was ahead 5-0 after one week. There were 399 players this year, a fall-off from over 600 at Marseilles last year.

    Next year's Euro-Go Congress will be hald in the resort mountains of Slovakia, the "other half" of the split-up of Czechoslovakia. It will be from July 24 to Aug 7, and about $425 for lodging, some meals and Congress costs. (Air fare is extra.) Contact Frank B. for entry forms and Info.

    Go for Kids

    by Fred Hopkins

    Fred Hopkins has introduced one class of 24 6th graders at Lake Forest Elementary school in Eldorado Hills to the game of go. Using 9x9 paper boards and Ing stones contributed by the AGA, the whole class was able to play two or three quick games to get an understanding of the basics. The kids seemed to be having fun even if they didn't quite understand all the rules.

    They were left with a couple of boards, a set of stones, and two copies of the IGO software.

    If enough kids take an interest in go, I hope one or more teachers may coordinate a weekly meeting for kids to play and learn. Once go takes a foothold in one school, it can be used as an example with which to approach other schools.

    AGA Membership

    The club is an affiliate of the American Go Association. If you are interested in individual membership in the AGA, dues are $25 per year. Please write to:

    American Go Association
    P.O. Box 397
    Old Chelsea Station
    New York, NY 10113

    Modified last on October 16, 1998 by Jeff Newmiller.
    (Comments and suggestions welcome.)

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