Home Page Chess Life Online 2009 April Shankland Wins Final Spot in Saint Louis
|Shankland Wins Final Spot in Saint Louis|
|April 6, 2009|
2009 U.S. Championship (May 7-17, Saint Louis.) The match came all the way down to the wire, with the two splitting the rapid and blitz matches.
IM Sam Shankland of Northern California won the final match against Mackenzie
Molner of New Jersey to claim the title of the State Champion of Champions and the
last spot in the |
Shankland was a bronze medallist at the 2008 World Under 18 Championship in Vietnam. Sam's USCF rating has shot up almost 200 points in just one year. At that rate, who knows how well he can do in the U.S. Championship, despite being one of the lower rated players in the field.
State Champion of Champions Final
In a random draw for colors in the Armageddon match, Sam got the White pieces and five minutes while Mackenzie got four minutes and draw odds. Sam told CLO, "Although the regulation games were at least somewhat real, once the blitz started it felt strange, like the result would be somewhat random and we were playing for (so much)."
Shankland is excited to play in Saint Louis and told CLO, "I was so thrilled to pull it out in the end after such a tough match. Molner was a very tough opponent."
Find out more about the State Champion of Champions and see the full list of U.S. Championship contenders here. Also check out an interview with Sam Shankland along with all of his games from Vietnam, annotated.