The University of Texas at Dallas Rallies To Win the First ‘Final Four’ of Chess

In the first competition of its kind ever held, The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) rallied on the final day of the weekend event to win the President’s Cup at the “Final Four” of intercollegiate chess, giving the UTD players legitimate claim to the title of “best college chess team in the United States.”

By defeating the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), 4 ½to 1 ½, in the final round of play on Sunday, UTD finished the tournament with 12 points to 11 ½ for UMBC. The University of California at Berkeley finished third with 6 ½ points, and Stanford University was fourth with 6 points.

UTD entered the final round trailing UMBC, 7 ½ points to 10. That was because UMBC on Saturday had beaten both the University of California at Berkeley and Stanford by wider margins than UTD had. UMBC trounced both schools by 5-1 margins, while UTD eked out a 3 ½ to 2 ½ win over U.C. Berkeley and defeated Stanford, 4-2.

As a result, UTD had to dominate UMBC in the final round to win the tournament. It did: UTD won four of its six games against UMBC and lost only one. The other game was a critically important draw – a tie that garnered UTD the half-point it needed to win the President’s Cup.

The event was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Reunion in downtown Dallas.

UTD and UMBC tied for first place at last December’s Pan American Intercollegiate Chess Championships in Milwaukee. The rivalry between the two schools has been very strong for the past several years.

The UTD team is coached by Dr. Tim Redman, a professor of literary studies in the School of Arts and Humanities. Redman views chess as a “symbol of the university’s intellectual excellence and competitive rigor.”

The UTD team is composed of Yuri Shulman, Balazs Szuk, Andrei Zaremba, Andrew Whatley, David John, Dennis Rylander, and as alternates, Andrei Dokuchayev and Jeff Ashton. The UTD Trainer is International Master Rade Milovanovic.

UTD, which has no football team, ranks among the top universities in the country in computer science graduates and strong programs in many other academic areas including engineering.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].

Tagged: chess