Chess tourney draws crowds at Student Union

By Mitchell Garrett

Mitchell Garrett/Collegian - Tables lined the walkways in the foyer of the Parker Student Union where aproximately 30 students gathered to participate in a chess tournament on March 11.
Mitchell Garrett/Collegian - Tables lined the walkways in the foyer of the Parker Student Union where aproximately 30 students gathered to participate in a chess tournament on March 11.

On March 11, the “Experience Chess” chess tournament was a resounding success.

The chess club had worked hard to get the word out about the club, but they were not expecting near as many players as actually showed up.

“I have been playing for quite a long time, probably about 10 years. Though I haven’t played seriously for all of those 10 years,” Ryan Scherich said. “I started playing chess because my father could teach me how to play.”

He was excited about starting the rounds and getting to play in the tournament.

There were 23 players in the tournament, but there were many more spectators and players that didn’t have time for the full event. There were two separate brackets, one for experienced players, and one for players who had less than a year of experience.

In the first round, Benjamin Young played Andrew Tolbert.

The game started fast, with each player moving like lightning. No move took more than a second.

After about eight moves, the round had slowed, but no pieces had been lost on either side of the board.

About five minutes into the game, Tolbert was far ahead. He had taken three of Young’s pawns, two bishops, two knights and a rook. He had only lost two pawns and a knight.

However, Young had been sacrificing pieces to set up a superior board state.

He quickly took Tolbert’s queen and caught him off guard.

At this point, Tolbert and Young’s board was the most empty of all boards in the tournament, and by far the most evolved.

Without Tolbert’s queen to stop it, Young’s queen had full control of the board. Within another seven turns, Tolbert had lost seven important pieces.

At the end of those turns, Young controlled a queen, a rook, and three pawns. His opponent only had a knight and a rook.

Just 11 minutes in, the game ended when Young checkmated Tolbert with his queen and rook.

Young replied with, “Good game! You had me until I took that queen.”

At this point, every other player already finished. A game that had moved so fast at the beginning ended up finishing last.

At the end of the tournament, there were ties for first place, in both brackets.

In the non-beginner bracket, Ryan Scherich tied for first with Benjamin Young.

In the beginner bracket, Darrius Webb tied with Thomas Borden.

There were so many players, that the chessboards used for the tournament were given away as prizes.

Everyone had a fun time, and the lobby of the Student Union was buzzing with activity for the entire afternoon.

If you want some extra money, or just want to have a fun afternoon, make sure that you don’t miss the next chess tournament.

Hits: 11

Share this story: