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Christiansen Takes Senior Open Print E-mail
By WIM Alexey Root   
September 7, 2009
2009 U.S. Senior Champ, GM Larry Christiansen. Photo Betsy Dynako
Breaking News:  GM Larry Christiansen won the U.S. Senior Open in Tulsa, Oklahoma, ceding only one draw to GM Larry Kaufman. 5.5 out of 6 was good for clear first and a spot in the 2010 U.S. Championships. Christiansen said, "It's been a long time since I was the youngest man in my section. But I played like an old man at times!" Larry said that he might have qualified for the U.S. Championship by rating, but was happy to lock in his spot at the Senior.

 GM Larry Kaufman was clear second with 5 of 6, defeating GM Boris Gulko en route to his finish. He drew Christiansen and, in the last round, drew IM Walter Shipman. As the highest-finishing player over 60, Kaufman wins a trip to the World Senior in Northern Italy.

The winner of the 6-round U.S. Women's Open is UTD sophomore WFM Saheli Nath with 5 out of 6. Second was WIM Iryna Zenyuk, who is the top American finisher and therefore qualifies for the 2010 U.S. Women's. Tied for 3rd through 5th with 4 points were UTD freshman Medina Parilla, WFM Chouchan Airapetian, and Jennifer Acon. UTD provided 5 of the 16 players in this first-ever U.S. Women's Open.

The photo below shows all the participants of the Women's Open, except Margaret Hua and Jennifer Acon.

Back row left to right: Joanna Gossell, Iryna Zenyuk, Marilyn Pelias, Helen Jamison, Karina Vazirova, Courtney Jamison, Bayaraa Zorigt, Brianna Conley, Medina Parrilla, Julia Jones. From row is Alexey Root, Chouchan Airapetian, Saheli Nath, and Natasha Christiansen.

The winner of the 7-round Okie Open was IM Michael Brooks. He had 6 out of 7 (draw vs. Tim Steiner mid-tournament and quick last round draw vs. Sergey Galant). Upon winning the Okie Open, he qualifies for an invitation next year to the Round Robin Master's Invitational.

Conrad Holt looks likely to win the round robin invitational. Full story coming soon.