Far Eastern University led by Head Coach Jayson Gonzales put a stamp to its golden run in the UAAP Season 82 Chess Tournament after bagging the Men’s and Women’s Championships last October 27, 2019 at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion.
Not even absorbing its only loss during final day of the competition put into question the dominance of the FEU Tamaraws Chess Team as it finished with 43 points with a 12-1-1 win-draw-loss card. University of Santo Tomas (UST) was second with 35.5 points, while University of the Philippines (UP) claimed the bronze 26.5 points.
National Master (NM) John Merill Jacutina extended his success from the High School division to the Seniors as he was named Most Valuable Player (MVP) and the Rookie of the Year (ROY). He also bagged a gold medal in Board 3. The title defense underscores the school’s stature as the gold standard in UAAP Men’s Chess as it now has a league-best 15 championships.
Meanwhile, the Lady Tamaraws fended off a late season surge by the DLSU Women’s Chess team to reclaim the UAAP title after two years. FEU finished with 40 points while DLSU, which was aiming for a three-peat, settled for second place with 38.5 points. UST placed third with 35.5 points.
Woman International Master (WIM) Shania Mae Mendoza was named Most Valuable Player and finished her UAAP career with three championships. Shania said she was happy to lead the Lady Tams back to the top and expressed confidence that her younger teammates will be able to win more for FEU even after her exit. Lady Tam Bea Mendoza was named Rookie of the Year and claimed the silver medal in Board 2.
FEU actually had a huge chance to make it three chess titles this season but the FEU Diliman Girls team was unable to hold on to its slim lead in the final round. National University snatched the Girls title with 30.5 points, while the Baby Lady Tamaraws, which led in the first nine rounds, finished with 29.5 points. FEU’s Mhage Gerriahlou Sebastian was named Rookie of the Year.
The FEU Diliman Boys team finished third in their division with 29.5 points. The Baby Tams trailed NU and eventual champion University of the East. Baby Tam Alekhine Nouri was named Rookie of the Year.