Right now everything I do used dynamic memory allocation and truth be told my classes aren't memory efficient (especially for debugging I like tracking some extra information to make sure stuff is working), but would that really be the difference between you're alpha beta pruning taking seconds and mine taking hours?
Of course, you might have a bug somewhere. But needless memory allocation can easily result in a factor of 100 slowdown. The problem is that everything in an alpha-beta searcher is part of the "inner loop", in some sense. Keeping an eye on performance is very important in this context.
I'll add some node counts to my code so we can compare mine and yours and see if I am just getting more nodes per second. It could be that I am also visiting many fewer nodes than you are, which would probably indicate a problem with your alpha-beta implementation.
Would be appreciated.
Going off my code using standard board and players starting in the middle
P1) initial position has 131 children. Assume player 1 moves
P2) initial position (based off player 1 moving) has 131 children
P1) First child from the 131 children returns 132 more children
P2) P2's first child also has 132 children
This first branch assumes both players are just moving directly towards their desired goal
So yeah I should find a way that you can't move backwards for the children (by backwards I mean to a position already done by one of the earlier children). Easiest way I can think of would be to have each view have a link back to it's parents and make sure the new view is not equal to any of the parents. Would the extra memory usage be worth the less nodes to view?