The Thrill of an Early Upset: The Pan-Ams Begin
By Ben Silva   
December 27, 2014
With the first round currently winding down the top teams are performing as expected. The 2014 Pan American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships kicked off with the opening ceremony introducing the chess players to the key organizers and even the mayor of South Padre Island. This was followed by a tasty nacho social where it was evident the masses were eager to start playing.

In the first round there were no teams upset. My own game kept me too busy to catch the top board clashes however our team's alternate and club president Matt Kolcz managed to capture some of the action.

While not every individual game is over at the time of this writing, there is also only a single individual upset. I'm happy to report it is my own:


To be fair I had the huge benefit of having been able to look up a couple of my opponents games online, which is perhaps the only real advantage of being a serious underdog. Sometimes just finding a single move or idea makes all the difference.

Next up is round two. Look for more of my updates during and after the tournament. Also follow along on and 

Follow along at the tournament website at UTB and find IM Kannapann's preview here.