Illya Nyzhnyk began playing chess at age 5, and hasn’t stopped since. As a talented junior, he won numerous youth events and soared to the Grandmaster title in 2011. Since then, Nyzhnyk helped lead an extremely dominant collegiate team at Webster University. During his tenure, the team won 5 consecutive PanAm InterCollegiate Chess Championships and 3 straight Final Four Championships. Outside of collegiate chess, Nyzhnyk has won the U.S. Open, National Open, and 4 World Opens. Recently, he has made a push towards the 2700 barrier, peaking at a 2699 live FIDE rating.