MANILA, Philippines - Top favorites FM Paulo Bersamina and FM Austin Jacob Literatus swept their respective assignments to remain tied for the lead even as WFM Jan Jodilyn Fronda continued to set the pace in the 2014 National age-group chess grand finals at the Leachhar Resort and Leisure Park in San Antonio, Quezon yesterday.
Bersamina outduelled Prince Mark Aquino and Mcdominique Lagula while Literatus, a top find from Davao City, subdued Clark Kent Anabieza and Justine Lita to maintain their grip on the lead with 7.5 points after nine rounds, half-a-point ahead of Virgen Gil Ruaya in the 20-and-under division.
Fronda, meanwhile, crushed Ynna Sophia Canape in the seventh round then drew with WFM Janelle Mae Frayna in the eighth to stay on top of the women’s play with six points in the premier class.
Fronda, who led La Salle to the UAAP chess crown, is half a point ahead of Frayna and a full point ahead of WFM Cherry Ann Mejia.
Frayna, a mainstay of Far Eastern University, defeated Lucelle Bermundo in the seventh round.
Earl Rhay Mantilla of Davao City stunned NCR’s Stephen Rome Panginilan in 42 moves of a French Defense but the latter held on to the boys’ 12-and-under class lead with seven points.
Emanuel Van Paler of Tondo, Manila drew with Sem Canasta of Masbate City in 111 moves of a Bird’s Opening to move up to 6.5 points.
In the girls’ 12 under category, Kylen Joy Mordido of Las Pinas City subdued second-running Jiessel Marino of San Pedro, Laguna to pad her lead to 2. 5 points.
In the boys’ under-10 category, Daniel Quizon of Taytay, Rizal drew with Michael Concio Jr. of Sta. Rosa, Laguna in 41 moves of a Sicilian to show the way with 8.5 points.
Half a point behind him is Adrian De Luna of Sta. Barbara, Iloilo, who beat Jan Mark Marin of San Pedro, Laguna in 35 moves of a Queen’s Pawn game.
In the girls division, Jerlyn Mae San Diego of Dasmariñas City and Checy Aliena Telesforo of San Joaquin, Iloilo kept their 1-2 positions with the former beating Rosette Anastacio of Naga City in 40 moves of a French Defense and the latter downing Lorebina Carrasco II of Cagayan de Oro City in 45 moves of a Scotch Opening.
In the girls’ 8-under, Precious Day Yecla of Kalibo, Aklan and Arianne Pearl Caalim of Naga City tied for the lead with eight points.