Chess at UTB
Tournament Wrap Up
January 6, 2015
On Tuesday, December 30th, the last games of the 2014 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships were played. During the last round, the A team of UTB took on the A team from Lindenwood University. Although the Lindenwood team held an average rating 276 points below the UTB squad, they posed a challenge in the final round. WGM Katerina Nemcova lost her game quickly to NM Nicholas Rosenthal, which put pressure on the remaining team members to win their games to allow the UTB team to vie for one of the final four spots. In the end, GM Kovalyov, GM Stukopin and GM Hernandez all won their games ultimately winning the match 3-1.
Although the loss in the third round to Texas Tech B was ultimately the undoing of the A team, the overall results for the tournament were commendable. The UTB A team ended the tournament scoring 4.0 out of 6.0 points, which placed them 8th overall in the final standings of the tournament. Among the Universities that finished, the Ocelots placed 5th, just out of reach of the final four. It has been four years since the UTB teams have qualified for the final four.
The B team did not fare as well for the Ocelots as they scored 2.5 out of 6.0 for the tournament and placing 32nd overall for the tournament. The B team faced a series of tough opponents during the course of the tournament which included an opening round pairing with the top ranked team, and ultimate winner of the tournament; the Webster A team. The team posted wins against the D team of Texas Tech as well as the B team from Lindenwood University. The half-point came from a draw with the University of Illinois D team.
The year was the first year that UTB brought along a C team to the tournament. The C team posted a final score of 2.0 out of 6.0, gaining their points by virtue of a bye round and posting a win against the team from UTPA. The C team placed 38th overall for the tournament.
Competing in their first Pan American Championship was a team from the University of Texas Pan American. The Broncs earned a tournament total 2.0 points by posting wins against teams from Texas A&M Kingsville and a team from the University of Utah Law School.
The teams that will be competing in the President’s Cup, or Final Four of Chess will be Webster University, University of Texas at Dallas, Texas Tech and the University of Maryland-Baltimore County. The tournament will take place in New York Athletic club on Easter Weekend.
Round 5 Update
December 29, 2014
The fifth round brought with it some bad news this evening as the A team from UTB was paired against the top team from Webster University. GMs Stukopin and Kovalyov both drew their games, putting pressure on GM Hernandez and WGM Nemcova to win or draw their matches to remain in contention for qualifying for the final four. Both fought their matches for about four hours, however, both fell to the higher rated Webster players. The loss puts the Ocelot A team at 3.0 points, not enough to qualify with the 9 other teams who also entered the round at the same score.
The C team suffered a similar fate against the B team of UT Austin. Brandon Flores and Benjamin Rovelo drew against their opponents. Bacardo III and Reyes both lost their games.
The B team was the bright spot of the round for UTB, defeating the B team of Lindenwood University. Jeffrey Serna, Simon Vasquez and Armando Cortez all posting wins. WIM De la Parra posted the only loss of the match.
Winning their first match of the tournament was the team from UTPA, defeating the team from Texas A&M University-Kingsville B team.
Get all of the latest updates and follow the action live at utb.edu/2014panams.
Round 4 Update
UT Brownsville chess player Andrey Stukopin competing at Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships
December 29, 2014
The fourth round was better for the UTB A team who played the C team of the University of Texas at Dallas. There were some tense moments as GM Stukopin lost his match to WIM Chardine Comacho. However, the wins of GMs Hernandez and Kovalyov and WGM Nemcova was enough to give the A team 3 points going into the fifth round.
The C team was not as fortunate. Brandon Flores drew his match which avoided the sweep of the team as they faced off against Washington University in St. Louis B team. Rovelo, Bocardo and Cohen all lost their games in this round.
For the B team, WIM De La Parra and Simon Vasquez III drew their games resulting in a point (.5 point each for the draw). With Armando Cortez losing his game against his opponent, all pressure was on junior Jeffrey Serna to win. With much effort, Jeffrey was able to win his game, forging a draw with the D team of the University of Illinois.
The fifth round will be an important match for all of the teams as the competition comes to a close tomorrow.
Get all of the standings or follow the action live at utb.edu/2014panams.
Round 3 Update
UT Brownsville chess player Rigoberto Bocardo III competing at Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships
December 28, 2014
It was a mixed outing for the Ocelots as they finished the 3rd round at the 2014 Pan Ams hosted on South Padre Island. The A team, rated approximately 250 points higher than their opponent Texas Tech B team, lost their match 3-1. GM Stukopin was the only team member who won his match, defeating IM Luis Torres. After GM Hernandez and GM Kovalyov dropped their matches, the best outcome would be a draw. WIM Aura Salazar gave it her best effort, however, in the end she conceded to her opponent which resulted in the loss.
The loss does not make it impossible for the Ocelots to qualify for the President’s cup, however, it makes it a much more difficult road to be travelled. The Ocelots will play the C team of the University of Texas at Dallas in the fourth round.
The bright spot of the 3rd round was wins posted by both the B and C teams, improving their tournament scores to 1.0. The B team defeated Texas Tech D team 4-0. The C team also won out their match 4-0 against their soon to be fellow Vaqueros from the University of Texas Pan American.
For the fourth round, the UTB-B team will take on the D team from the University of Illinois. The C team will be facing the B team from Washington University of St. Louis. The UTPA squad will take on the team from Florida State University.
Round 2 Wrap Up
UT Brownsville student Holden Hernandez chess member competing at Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships
December 28, 2014
The second round of the Pan American Tournament took place starting at 10:00 this morning. All of the teams were in good spirits as they sat down to the boards and the games began.
For the A team, they were pitted against the A team from New York University. The first win of the match from alternate Aura Salazar, who was on the fourth board, sitting in for WGM Katerina Nemcova. Aura defeated Hengi Wu, handing the NYU player his first loss of the tournament. GM Hernandez, still stinging after his draw in the first round, took charge of his board, easily defeating Venkat Iyer to mark the second win for the Ocelots. GMs Kovalyov and Stukopin wrapped things up by defeating their opponents as well making it a 4-0 sweep for the A Team.
Things did not fare quite as well for the B and C teams, both getting blanked by their opponents in the second round. The B team was originally paired against Texas A&M Kingsville, however, due to two of the Texas Tech teams being paired against each other, something that is not allowed to occur in the early rounds of the tournament. The tournament director then made a switch which paired the Ocelot B squad against a much higher rated B team from Tech. Although there were opportunities, the B team ultimately fell to the Red Raiders losing 4-0.
The C team was paired against the A team from Brown University. Brandon Flores of the C team posted a draw against his opponent. Alternate Carla Reyna made her debut in this match, however, due to the stout opposition of her opponent, ultimate lost her game. The C team lost the rest of their games which ultimately cost the C team the match.
In almost a carbon copy fashion, the UTPA squad lost their match against the Lindenwood B team 3.5 to .5. Carlos Flores, playing board 1 for the Broncs drew his match against Nicolas Naylor that saved the team from a 4-0 loss.
The B and C teams of UTB and the UTPA team are winless to this point, however, round three brings with it fresh opportunities for the players.
The third round is set to begin at 5 PM this evening at the Hilton Garden Inn at South Padre Island. Spectators are welcome.
To get results, pairings and live action, you can go to utb.edu/2014panams.
Pan American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championship 2014
The UTB Chess Program will be competing in the 2014 Pan American Intercollegiate Team
Chess Championship from Saturday, December 27 to Tuesday, December 23 at the Hilton Garden Inn and the La Quinta Inn at South Padre Island.
Representing UTB will be:
Simon Vasquez III
Jeffrey M. Serna
WIM Daniela De La Parra
Brandon M. Flores
Rigoberto Bocardo III
Matthew A. Cohen