St. Louis wins 2022 Pan Am Intercollegiate Team Championship



The University of Saint Louis (SLU) team earned their place in the President’s Cup by clearing first place at the 2022 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship with a perfect score. The winners will be joined in the Final Four alongside UT Dallas and Texas Tech who both got 5/6, and fourth and final place goes to Webster on the tiebreaker at 4.5 / 6.

Four other teams scored 4.5 / 6, including the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) which lost to SLU in the last round and the University of Chicago (UChicago) which drew against Team B of Webster on the last lap. The UTRGV has won the President’s Cup for the past three consecutive years, so a new champion will be crowned this year.

Here is a recap of some of the highlights throughout the tournament. You can find the matches here, watch the tournament broadcasts on our Twitch Channel, and you can see all teams and individual results here or to

In the first round, 30th seed UTRGV B WGM Maili-Jade Ouellet faced 2nd seed SLU GM Cemil Can Ali Marandi. The SLU general manager put his tower on a precarious square, and Ouellet immediately took advantage and forced him to wreck the exchange for a pawn. She eventually managed to convert the exchange against Ali Marandi’s pair of bishops, forcing him to resign after 72 moves.

In the second round, another WGM and GM clashed, but this time between the 15th seeded Harvard team and SLU. WGM Jennifer Yu managed to win two clean pawns against GM Nikolas Theodorou when she started wasting time.

The grandmaster had 19 and a half minutes against 90 seconds for Yu. Living on the increase, she made the last 10 moves of the game with less than a minute on the clock. His opponent managed to win back one of his pawns before they were content with a draw.

Jennifer Yu as Nikolas Theodorou. Photo: Angie Le.

In another second round match, 24th seed UT Austin B’s Dang Nguyen faced seventh seeded Webster B’s FM Ezra Chambers. This dramatic match saw Dang sacrifice the Queen in order to achieve an exciting material imbalance. and eventually achieve two complicated towers and two pawns against the queen’s final.

It looked like the queen would be able to keep the draw going with a perpetual, but Dang was able to push the pawns forward and protect the king enough to progress in what was a game of over 100 moves.

The same round also saw another upset from 18th seeded MIT’s NM Howard Zhong against No. 1 seeded Webster A’s GM Lazaro Bruzon Batista. Howard was able to trade in a final equal round and pawn. where the players agreed to a draw. Unfortunately for the MIT team, those would be their only points of the round as the powerful Webster team won on the remaining three draws.

Howard Zhong Lazaro Bruzon 2022 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship
Howard Zhong as Black vs. Lazaro Bruzon. Photo: Angie Le.

In the third round, Team SLU faced Team Webster B in a tied match before the fourth and final game between general managers Dariusz Swiercz of SLU and Yuniesky Quesada Perez of Webster.

What looked like a draw position in turn and pawn against turn and two pawns, Swiercz continued the fight with one pawn and crushed his opponent until he broke through. Yuniesky blundered by continuing his turn tests when he needed to defend his last remaining pawn.

Swiercz’s victory maintained SLU’s winning streak in what would otherwise have been their first draw of the tournament.

Dariusz Swiercz Quesada Perez 2022 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship
Dariusz Swiercz playing Quesada Perez. Photo: Angie Le.

In the fourth round, SLU had another close encounter this time against Texas Tech. GM Benjamin Bok was able to secure the only victory of the match by ruining his opponent’s pawn structure and creating a strong past pawn. His opponent IM Samuel Schmakel resigned on the 49th move.

This round also saw another very close game between UChicago and UT Dallas. UCicago’s top two players, GM Awonder Liang and Praveen Balakrishnan, drew against MIs Guillermo Vazquez and Ivan Schitco, and the Chicago board of directors three MI Zhaozhi Li drew against MI David Brodsky.

The whole game was played on fourth boards FM Kapil Chandran of Chicago and IM Rahul Srivatshav Peddi of Dallas. Rahul was able to get an extra pawn one square in the promotion when Kapil had one last chance to find himself in a bind. Kapil took the extra pawn on move 44, and if Rahul took over it would have been a dead end. Rahul wisely avoided immediate capture and gave a series of checks to win the tower and the game.

Dutch GM Bok came on once again in the fifth round for SLU against UT Dallas. Once again he was able to secure the only win in the game against IM Brian Escalante to win the game 2.5-1.5.

2022 Dalles St Louis Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship
Dallas versus Saint-Louis. Photo: Angie Le.

The all-women team of SLU B also won the fifth round against UC San Diego. The ladies ended up winning the match by a score of 3-1 with two wins and two draws.

One of their victories came from FM Thalia Cervantes over Sudhir Vasudevan, and their other victory came from FM Gabriela Antova over San Diego NM leader Richard Yi. The SLU B team ended up getting a 4/6 record which was tied for 9th place and good enough for 10th place based on the tiebreakers and earned them the best team award. feminine.

Gabriela Antova NM Richard Yi 2022 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship
The all-female SLU B team (left). Photo: Angie Le.

Their opponents UC San Diego also did well with a score of 4/6, which puts them in 12th place as they are the 44th seeded team. They also won the Best Surprise Award as well as the Best Division 6 Team Award.

First Prize Upset First Prize Team Division 6 2022 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship
The upset top prize and the top Division 6 team award went to San Diego. Photo: Angie Le.

The sixth and final round saw many teams battle for a place in this year’s Final Four. SLU and UTRGV were playing on the first table with SLU at 5/5 and UTRGV at 4.5 / 5. Thanks to Theodorou’s victory over GM Ulvi Bajarani, SLU would win the match 2.5-1.5 finishing the perfect tournament and taking first place in the Final Four.

Saint Louis Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championship 2022
The team from the University of Saint Louis (SLU) with the trophy. Photo: Angie Le.

Six other teams were all tied at 4/5. Texas Tech would play against Yale, UT Dallas would play against SLU B, and UChicago would play against Webster B. All of these teams on the top four tables have scholarship programs with the exception of UChicago and Yale who came first and third respectively in the previous Season of the Collegiate Chess League.

UChicago and Webster B split the game 2-2 and Yale would fall to Texas Tech 1.5-2.5. With the win, Texas Tech would drop to 5/6 and clinch a spot in the President’s Cup, and UT Dallas clinched their ticket to the Final Four with a 3-1 win over SLU B.

University of Dallas Chess Team
The University of Dallas chess team. Photo: Angie Le.

With the draw between Chicago and Webster B, they were now tied at 4.5 / 6 with UTRGV. They would have to wait to see which team would make the final. Two other teams would rise to join them, Webster A after beating Mizzou and UT Dallas B after beating Harvard. Once the dust cleared, Webster A found himself with the strongest tiebreakers and would take fourth and final place in the President’s Cup.

Maybe SLU will finally win it all for the first time after their first clear PanAms performance last weekend. Their best performance in the Final Four came last year when they secured second place losing only to UTRGV.

SLU still faces stiff competition as Webster, Texas Tech and UT Dallas aim to reclaim their title. Webster won the championship five in a row between 2013 and 2017, Texas Tech won two in a row before that from 2011 to 2012, and UT Dallas has won the President’s Cup four times since its inception in 2001. This year is hotly contested The President’s Cup will likely take place in April and its location is currently being determined. Stay tuned for location and broadcast updates!

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