College Final Four Update: Brownsville vs. Maryland Baltimore County
By WIM Luciana Morales   
April 11, 2010
University of Texas at Dallas vs. the University of Texas at Brownsville
We couldn't ask for a more exciting final round at the President's Cup: The Final Four of College Chess. UTB, the home team, will try their hand at winning the toughest Final Four against UMBC, the defending champions.

In the first round UMBC prevailed over UTD 3-1, a team that surprisingly is not playing with two of their top players. Salvijus Bercys gave Dallas their only victory of the day. Meanwhile, UTB defeated Texas Tech 2.5 - 1.5 thanks to Max Cornejo's victory in the fourth board. All the other games were drawn although both Mauricio Flores and Axel Bachmann missed some chances against Gabor Papp and Gergely Antal respectively.

By quickly defeating Marko Zivanic in the second round, Timur Gareev opened the door for UTB's victory over UTDallas. On an unrelated note, according to Facebook genealogic records, Marko is Timur's son. A fine triumph by Axel Bachmann and draws by Mauricio Flores and Max Cornejo set the score 3-1 in favor of UTB. UMBC beat Texas Tech with the same score. Maryland's top players, Leonid "Chief" Kritz and Sergey "Stealth" Erenburg, are the only competitors with two out of two. Now the match between Dallas and TTU will determine who escapes the last place.

Sunday morning will see the top seeded teams compete for the gigantic cup. In one corner, a team with the record of most Final Fours won. In the other corner, the home team. Most of the members of one team speak Russian while the others mostly speak Spanish. Both sides have three GMs and one IM and each one of them wants to kick butt.

Would you say this is David vs. Goliath? Let's see what happens. Watch it live on
Also see the photo gallery on flickr. The Tournament Director is International Arbiter Frank Berry and he is assisted by Luis Salinas who manages the Monroi transmission.


In this tournament there are 20 players from 16 countries (US, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Lithuania, New Zealand, Paraguay, Philippines, Peru, Romania, Serbia and Uzbekistan.)

* "Pawn Stars" was the headline of a Final Four preview published in UTB's newspaper The Collegian (yep, that's where I work.)