Thursday, August 13, 2009

Douthitt "Checkmates" for Tennessee

Douthitt "Checkmates" for Tennessee
Blake Douthitt • Reader Submitted • August 11, 2009

Lubbock, TX, July 26-31, 2009 Autumn Douthitt, a freshman at Montgomery Central High School, recently returned from being the Tennessee representative for the Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls (SPNI) chess tournament. Autumn finished the tournament in a tie for 8th place (19th overall) out of sixty competitors. She won four out of six games. Roy Manners, Director of the Clarksville Chess Club, praised Autumn as she “represented Tennessee very well against some very tough players.”

This was a tremendous accomplishment for Autumn as SPNI is the most prestigious all-girls event in the United States. The tournament was held at the Frazier Pavilion at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. Each state is allowed at least one representative to compete in six games of chess. These girls represent the best girls in the country. Texas Tech provided competitors free room and board at Gordon Hall for the week. This was a high pressure tournament as Texas Tech University agreed to award a four-year full-ride academic scholarship (to attend TTU) to the highest finishing player who has not graduated from high school by August (value at approximately $75,000-$80,000).

Autumn currently studies under National Master Henry Robinson of Charlotte, TN. She also participates with the Clarksville Chess Club, which meets every Thursday night (7:00) in the basement of the APSU library. The Clarksville Chess Club invites all levels and ages to come and participate. For more information about the Clarksville Chess Club visit

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