Not even a final round defeat could deny Far Eastern University the title of greatest UAAP Men’s Chess team of all time.
The Tamaraws suffered their very first defeat of the tournament at the hands of the University of Santo Tomas Tigers, a 1.5-2.5 beating in the 14th and final round, but the UAAP Season 82 Chess Tournament was already a foregone conclusion several rounds before.
Minus the final round setback, it was a performance to remember nonetheless as FEU finished with 43 points, or an unforgiving 7.5 points ahead of eventual second placer UST with 35.5 points.
It was the 15th title for the Morayta-based chessers, the most by any UAAP schools, that underscored their status as the league’s best collegiate chess team.
It will take a very long time before anyone could lay claim on FEU’s status as both La Salle and UST have only seven crowns apiece.
And it looked like the Tams will build a dynasty as they will parade practically the same team anchored on their Big Three—Jeth Romy Morado, RK Sevillano, and JM Jacutina—in seasons to come.
All three won gold on the top three boards with Morado and Jacutina sharing the Most Valuable Player award and Sevillano and Jacutina named as co-Rookie of the Year awardees.
Another Tamaraw, Israelito Rilloraza claimed the gold on board six to cap FEU’s domination of the tournament.
The only gold that didn’t go FEU’s way went to Ateneo’s Tristan Jared Cervero on board four and UST’s Antonio Almodal III on board five.
Morado, the reigning national juniors champion, would have bagged the MVP plum uncontested if not for a shock 62-move defeat to Julius Gonzales in a Scotch duel.
Jacutina, for his part, took care of business by downing Samson Lim III in 60 moves of a Stonewall variation of the Queen’s Pawn opening while Sevillano halved the point with Melito Ocsan, Jr. in 34 moves of an English duel.
UST capped its upset of FEU with a quick, masterful 27-move triumph by Brylle Gever Vinluan over John Jasper Laxamana in another English encounter on board four.
UST finished with silver with 35.5 points while University of the Philippines, which drew with National University, 2-2, pocketed the bronze with 26.5 points.
Women's Chess: FEU dethrones La Salle, emerges as new UAAP women’s champion
Far Eastern University eked out a closely-fought 2.5-1.5 win over University of Santo Tomas in the 14th and final round to snare its fifth title in the women’s class of the UAAP Season 82 Chess Tournament at the Quadricentennial Pavilion Sunday.
Shania Mae Mendoza provided the lone victory on top board as the rest—Bea Mendoza, Marife dela Torre and Viona Nepascua—ended up with fighting draws to help the Lady Tams finish with 40 points, good enough to claim the crown.
La Salle, last year’s winner, went for shutout win but wound up with just a slim 2.5-1.5 win over first-round conqueror Ateneo on wins Antoinette Marie San Diego and Samantha Glo Revita on boards two and three and a split by Franchell Eds Javier with Laila Camel Nadera on board four, and settled for second place with 38.5 points.
It was sweet revenge for the Lady Woodpushers from Taft Avenue after they made up for a 1.5-2.5 defeat at the hands of the Lady Eagles, whose lone win was provided for by Alexis Anne Ocena on board two, in the very first round that derailed the former’s title-retention bid.
If there’s any consolation, San Diego edged Philippine Olympiad squad teammate Mendoza for the board one gold and MVP plum.
San Diego actually finished with 11.5 points or half a point behind Mendoza with 12 but took the pair of awards after emerging with the higher percentage score of 88.5 percent against the latter’s 85.7 percent.
Mendoza was just too happy to end her five-year collegiate career with three championships and a pair of runner-up finishes plus a Rookie of the Year award to spare.
“Winning the championship is enough for me as I bid goodbye to my alma mater,” said Mendoza, who had to skip last season to play for the national team in World Chess Olympiad in Batumi, Georgia.
The Lady Woodpushers of España Boulevard, coached by Grandmaster-elect Ronald Dableo, settled for third with 35.5 points.
Other board gold medalists were FEU’s Bea Mendoza on board two, Ateneo’s Manilyn Cabungcag and Laila Camel Nadera on boards three and four, UST’s Vanezza Fe Villamil on board five, and FEU’s Rizalyn Jasmine Tejada on board six.
High School Chess: NU overtakes FEU to take UAAP Girls' Chess crown, UE Boys' end 13-year drought
National University saved its best for last as it routed Ateneo, 4-0, and overtook Far Eastern University to claim its second straight title in the Girls’ division of the UAAP Season 82 Chess Tournament at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion Sunday.
Allaney Jia Doroy, Jesca Docena, Vic Glysen Derotas, and Natasja Jasmine Ballabo delivered the victories across the board to turn a half-point deficit in the ninth and penultimate round into the Lady Bullpups’ second crown in a row after finishing with 30.5 points.
The Baby Lady Tamaraws, who led most of the tournament and NU by half a point entering the last round, managed just a 2.5-1.5 win over the Adamson Junior Lady Falcons and settled for second place with 29.5 points.
It was a sweet triumph for NU, the champion in last year’s maiden UA