UMBC chess team's winning streak ends

Absence of star player a factor in loss

March 26, 2007|By Lynn Anderson | Lynn Anderson,Sun Reporter

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County chess team lost to its main rival, the University of Texas at Dallas, in the last nding a four-year winning streak, according to the team's director.

The loss was blamed in part on mistakes by team members as well as the absence of the team's top player, Alexander Onischuk, who could not compete in the tournament because he was in Russia at a chess invitational, said team director Alan T. Sherman.

"It was critical for our team that he was unable to play," said Sherman, who did not travel to Texas but was in touch with team coach Igor Epshteyn.

The University of Texas at Dallas also won the tournament in 2001 and 2002, Sherman said.

But UMBC was the top team at the event for four years in a row, starting in 2003.

In December, UMBC placed third at the Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championship, earning the right to compete at this weekend's event.

To see how UMBC performed at the Final Four Collegiate Championships, go to www. monroi.com.

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