KAIAC chess tournament: Check out these mates


Angela Jinyoung Choe

On Nov. 12, SIS hosted an annual KAIAC Chess tournament against four schools. This year, a total of 26 players attended the event, a significant rise from last year’s 23 players. Specifically, SIS sent eight varsity, eight junior varsity, and nine elementary players from which two members of the SIS varsity chess team placed second and third for the KAIAC Chess tournament.

“I have participated in the chess club at SIS since middle school” said Noah Chang (10), member of the chess club. “After joining the official chess club last year, I have improved significantly. In the most recent KAIAC chess tournament, I have placed second. Although I could not achieve my dream in placing first, I still placed second and I am proud of that.”

The SIS chess team has steadily grown in size ever since its establishment. Just last year, there were only a limited number (will get specific number after interviews) of boys. However, this year, there has been a significant increase of not only members, but girls as well. This year, four female chess players have joined the club, attending their very first KAIAC chess tournament. With a significant increase of female members, Ms. Choi stated that she and the other chess coaches at other schools are planning on creating a girls division as the number of female chess players is increasing. However, for now, due to the lack of girl chess players, girls will be playing against boys, but they will receive different awards toward the end of the tournament.

“It is wonderful to see an overall increase of members joining the chess club” said Ms. Choi, supervisor of the Chess Club. “Just until a few years ago, there were not many members, which alarmed the dismantlement of the club. However, the increase of members had made me excited to see what will come in the near future.”

The increase in size has also allowed the chess club to be more selective in taking members to the annual KAIAC chess tournament. According to Seehyun Park (11), this year’s tournament was one of SIS’s better tournaments for the team. Previously, due to the lack of members, the SIS chess team had no limits in taking members to the tournament. However, this year, a preliminary round was held, taking eight of the most skilled chess players. Regardless of the limit on the number of players, SIS has always won at least one award at each tournament.

“My brother is a member of the chess club,” said Lauren Kang (9), member of the chess club. “I have never laid a finger on a chess piece before. I first thought that the chess would be boring. However, after actually experiencing what it is like, I enjoy chess. I am eager to attend more chess tournaments and wish to produce good results.”

The increase of members has given the SIS chess team to send the cream of the crop to its KAIAC tournaments. Due to the increase of members in other schools, coaches are planning future tournaments for the chess players. Ms. Choi is very pleased to see the increase of female chess members and is eager to establish the female chess division as well as maintaining outstanding results for the previous tournaments.