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Loja 6-0 in 85th NCAA Chess Championship

Monday, August 24, 2009Luc Mikhail Loja, a senior student, MHSS chess team captain and NCAA 83 gold medalist, continued his winning streak in the NCAA Chess Championship. With a total win-loss record of 6-0, Luc leads in the bid for the individual gold in board 3. He started off with a bang, downing his first opponent, Jeune Mabanag of EAC, in 46 moves of the Bishop’s opening. Picking up momentum in Game 2, Luc used his mastery of the English opening to force Miguel Lahoz of CSB into submission after 62 moves. His efforts were not enough, however, to secure wins for his team, ending with a 3-1 score in favor of Benilde. Due to a bye1, Mapúa didn’t compete in Game 3. In Game 4, Luc routed Woman National Master (WNM) Cherry Anne Mejia in 52 moves of the Sicilian Sveshnikov. Mapúa put up a good fight but lost when WNM Jan Jodilyn Fronda escaped defeat from Ryan Simbulan (MHSS) after 80 moves of the Reti opening, ending with a 3-1 in favor of Letran. Luc didn’t play in Game 5, because he opted to study for the first quarter exams. He returned in Game 6 against San Beda’s Ralph Idencio and crushed him in 27 moves of the Grand Prix opening. Round 7 and 8 also ended in favor of Luc as Marc Manero (UPHSD) and Patrick Cuevas (JRU) bowed in quick succession.

If Luc wins his next 5 games, Malayan High School of Science will most likely see another gold medal.

1A bye is a break/a round when a team doesn’t play due to the absence of an opponent team.
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