Making their moves

SAHS Chess Club hosts 10th annual tournament

Players make their moves on the chess boards during the July 20 SAHS Chess Club tournament at Pioneer Park. Play ended with a three-way tie for first place in the top section and a five-way tie for first in the novice section. (Submitted photo)

The 10th annual St Croix Valley Chess tournament attracted 25 players who competed in two sections July 20 in Pioneer Park in Stillwater.

The top section ended in a three-way tie with three players each scoring three points. Former tournament champions Roger Redmond and Shaun Coggins, and young Brian Billman were the co-champions this year.

Billman is an eighth grader at Metcalf Junior High School in Burnsville. Winners of class prizes in the top section were Alex Screaton of Lake Elmo and the SAHS Chess Club, Aaron Thomson, a seventh grader at Friendly Hills in Bloomington and John Thomson from Bloomington.

The Novice section ended in five-way tie with the top players scoring three points. The winners in tie break order were: Josh French, first place trophy on tie breaks, a seventh grader from Eagle Ridge School in Eden Prairie; Mani Chadaga, second place trophy on tie breaks, a fifth grader from Capital Hill School in St Paul; Ross Screaton, third place trophy on tie breaks, a member of the SAHS Chess Club; Thai Loyd, from the Friendly Hills School in Bloomington and Bill Loyd. Other prizewinners were Adam Johnson of the SAHS Chess Club, Frankie Casselius, Friendly Hills School and Simon Mulrooney, from Capital Hill School.

The tournament even had a surprise visit from Chomp the carrot, The PowerUp4Kids mascot, who stopped by for a quick chess game with Adam Johnson of the SAHS Chess Club. Chomp happened to be making an appearance in the park and could not resist a chess challenge.

Jeff Higgins ran the tournament while Sarah Lee, Diane Higgins, Janet Carlson and Toni Lehman promoted and operated another fun-filled day. Proceeds benefit the SAHS Chess Club. Club members who played this year included Ross Screaton, Alex Screaton, Adam Johnson and Peace Sinyigaya.