The USCL Championships have came to an end, proclaming the New England Nor'easters as the new reigning Champs, in their first participation in the League! And they accomplished this achievement with an unusual roster, counting no GMs in their ranks and trusting in the skills of Sam Shankland, one of the players with the better statistics in the USCL history, and who has has achieved nothing but enlarging his stature this year. Every other player from the New England team also stood out on his own, causing the Nor'easters to beat the record for best regular season with an outstanding 9.5-0.5. (IM Robert Hungasky was nother of their brightest stars, scoring seven out of eight, and winning all three of his playoff games).
The Saturday final faced the Nor'easters agianst the Miami Sharks. Miami also had its own credentials for the title counting the 2010 League MVP, GM Julio Becerra in its ranks, and the biggest surprise of the playoffs, Nicolas Rosenthal, who was compensating the rating difference on board 4 by overcoming three higher rated players in a row. In this final he extended that streak to four!!
The final started badly for Miami, as FM Charles Galore forfeited his game after being unable to make it to the site because of car trouble. Quite an unfortunate fact for the Miami Sharks, who were then required to win in the other boards. But at the end, the wins were falling on the side of the Nor'easters with the only exception of Rosenthal who completed his excellent performance in the playoffs.
More information about the USCL in their website or the United States Chess League group in Chess.com
These are the three games from the Saturday final:
(black forfeits on time)
The USCL Champs!
New England Nor'easters (from left to right): FM Braden Bournival, IM Sam Shankland, IM David Vigorito, NM Carey Theil, IM Robert Hungaski, NM Alex Cherniack, FM Charles Riordan, IM Jan van de Mortel, FM Christopher Chase