Girl Power: Ballom and Parrilla on the rise!

Stephanie Ballom wins Girls' Crown!

Adrian Ballom beams when speaking of his daughter's accomplishments.  Five years ago,  he taught his 14-year old daughter Stephanie how to play chess. Since then she has not only won bragging rights in the household, but recently won the high school section of the Texas Girls' Chess Championships.

Stephanie is a freshman at Mansfield H.S. and is currently ranked 23rd for girls under-16. After waltzing to victory with a 6-0 score, she wins a full scholarship to
University of Texas-Dallas (UTD) valued at $30,000.

Stephanie Ballom. Photo by Paul Moseley.

Stephanie Ballom
(photo by  Paul Moseley)

"Stephanie is very competitive, but she takes any setback calmly. She doesn't fall apart."

~ WIM Alexey Root, University of Texas-Dallas professor ~

Her immersion in chess has resulted improved reading comprehension will come in handy when she begins to pursue her dreams of becoming a doctor. She admires Zsuzsa Polgar and the late World Champion, Mikhail Tal. "He's a very good attacker… and that's what I do," she is quoted as saying.  Perhaps she needs to be fed a dose of games by one of today's greatest attackers, the youngest Polgar… Judit. Stephanie, who shares a birthday with Bobby Fischer (March 9th), has already beaten her first Master… Bruce Pandolfini in a simultaneous exhibition. She hopes to compete in Polgar's Invitational Girl's tournament which takes place next year in Florida.

Robert Cadwallader, "Chess Queen: Mainsfield freshman moves to the top,", 5 November 2003 (Dallas, Texas).

Parrilla shines in Greece!

Medina Parrilla just returned from Halkidiki, Greece,  having shown that she will be a force in scholastic chess. After a solid 6-5 showing (4 wins, 4 draws, 3 losses) in the Girl's under-12 group at World Youth Championships, she returns with a wealth of experience and life lessons.

Having played in the longest tournament of her life, Medina tailed off toward the end, scoring ˝-point in the last three rounds. She had reached as high as board #4 in the 9th round. With a United States rating of 1744, she will certainly get a FIDE rating much higher.

A leader of two National Championship teams, things will only get better for this Bronx native. Watch out… this girl can play!

Medina Parrilla. Photo by Robert Mecea.

Medina Parrilla
(photo by Robert Mecea)

"We have a real prize here, because she is a promising Black player who is also a promising female player, and her self-motivation is incredible."

~ Maliq Soter, coach, Chess-in-Schools program (New York) ~

Medina Parrilla's Games

Round 1:  Parrilla - Selina Khoo (England unrated), 0-1
Round 2: Tinatin Beridze (Georgia unrated) - Parrilla,  0-1
Round 3: Parrilla
- Mihn Ly Nguyen (Canada unrated), 1-0
Round 4: Parrilla - Maria Heinatz  (Switzerland unrated), ˝-˝
Round 5: Spela Orehek (Slovenia unrated) - Parrilla, 0-1
Round 6: Krishna I. Ramya (India 1940) - Parrilla, ˝-˝
Round 7: Parrilla - Kubra Ozturk (Turkey 1969), 1-0
Round 8: Olga Guiria (Russia unrated) - Parrilla, ˝-˝
Round 9: Parrilla -
Anastasia Bodnaruk (Russia 2069), 0-1
Round 10:
Salome Khazhomia (Georgia 1826) - Parrilla, ˝-˝
Round 11:  Parrilla -  Zoi Iordanidou  (Greece unrated), 0-1

Score: 6-5

Posted by The Chess Drum: 6 November 2003