November 7, 2014
For the second year in a row, Texas Tech University's chess team, Knight Raiders, earned a share of the state title at the annual Texas Collegiate Championships in Irving.
The Knight Raiders tied the final score with the University of Texas-Brownsville for state honors and set the University of Texas-Dallas (UT-D) back to third place on its own home turf. Last year, Texas Tech tied with UT-D for the state crown.
“Texas is home to three of the top four college chess teams in the nation,” said Texas Tech chess coach Alex Onischuk. “Our students performed well under pressure. The competitors from all schools were well trained and were trying hard to win. No game was easy.”
The Knight Raiders' B-team finished fourth, with team member Seetharam Marreddy winning individual honors and raising his chess rating by more than 150 points.
Last year, Texas Tech finished third in the Final Four of College Chess in New York City.
Al Lawrence and Alex Onischuk
“We are very proud of the continued success of our chess program, and we hope this victory provides us with the momentum to qualify for the Final Four next month,” said Paul Frazier, assistant vice president for the Division of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement.
The Knight Raiders will head to the Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championship on Dec. 27-30 at South Padre Island to try to qualify for the Final Four of College Chess in 2015.
“This win is another big step in reconfirming Texas Tech as a national leader in competitive chess,” said Al Lawrence, director of the Chess program. “It's also a reflection of the excellent work of Coach Onischuk and of the support and encouragement we receive from Texas Tech University.”
The Texas Tech University Chess program – part of the Division of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement – offers outreach programs to more than a dozen area schools and can provide teaching materials and other assistance on request.
Through the Texas Tech Chess Program, the university has focused its resources on providing scholarships for players, conducting research, championing scholastic, college and women's chess and reaching out to chess enthusiasts of all ages.Twitter
Chess Program Makes History with National Awards