Marist Chess: All the Pawns

The Marist Chess Team readies for the conference playoffs with sectionals and state approaching.


Sierra Champliss

Coach Crude and the chess team setting up for practice.

Over the years the Marist Chess Team has done exceptionally well, and this year is no different. With Will Schrek (Senior) and Shakira Luster (Junior) as co-captains, they have led their team to the state sectionals that take place on January 28th.

While speaking with Cedric “Big Pawn” Crude, the head coach and a chess master, he shared that he has high expectations for the team. This is his first-year coaching at Marist, but he has years of experience with the game. During our interview he stated, “This year we have a really strong team with the top eight players and top four boys returning next year.”

Will Schreck and James McQuaid during a practice match. (Sierra Champliss)

The week leading up to a match is full of preparation, especially with State coming up. While speaking with Shakira Luster, a co-captain and nationally ranked player, she shared how she practices for an upcoming match by saying, “[I] study Aimchess and play puzzles on”

Imani Hill, Junior, shared her experience on the chess team by saying: “My experiences on the Chess Team so far have been good.  The team and coaches are welcoming. The chess team is different from other teams because it is more involved [as far as improving].”

Even though competing on a team may seem difficult, they are always looking for new members. If you’re interested in chess you should drop by the Tribute Room on Wednesdays after school.

It’s going to be a busy month for the team.  Good luck!