Checkmate on Your Classmate: Early Morning Chess Players Make the Right Move   


Morgan Todaro

Sport of Kings: Freshmen Wyatt Welch, Jacob Weathington, Jack Shultz, Hunter Black are part of an early-morning group of chess players who match wits before first period.

For some early-morning Dubs, the right move before getting to the first class of the day might be a Chick-fil-A run or maybe grabbing a gulp of stiff joe from Starbucks. But for some aspiring chess masters, the right move before making it to class just might be: 1. e4, e5; 2. Nf3, Nc6; and 3. Bb5.

That move sequence – didn’t you know? – is called the Ruy Lopez opening. It’s not known whether our school’s chess aficionados know that bit of strategic game minutia. What these early-morning chess types do know is that playing the “sport of kings” is a great way to start their days.

This morning ritual appears to be instilled in these chess playing Dubs pre school routines as it has become an instinctive practice for them to move straight to the chess boards upon entering school. For many of these players, this is a part of their day they can’t go without. “You can be sure to find me down on the fourth floor every morning starting my day off the right way with a leisurely yet brain stimulating game of chess,” said freshman Jacob Weathington. “It is a fun way to start my day and it even serves as a good warm-up activity to get my mind prepared for class.”  

While this group of chess players isn’t an official team, they may as well be. Considering their dedication, and the fact that they consistently meet with the same players each morning, they continue to resemble more and more qualities of an official team. Since they are all so invested, why wouldn’t they consider acting on this possibility? “Playing chess in the morning is just something we do for fun to pass the time before school starts,” said freshman Wyatt Weitch. “We don’t take it too seriously and just have fun with it.” 

While hallway chess does appear to be a casual hallway pastime, some players are more experienced in this game than you would expect. A few actually began their chess endeavors starting at a very young age. “I have been playing chess for a long time,” said freshman Jack Shultz, “I was first taught to play when I was eight years old.” 

If you’re looking for a way to kill time in the morning it may serve you well to take a visit to the 4th floor chess boards. Make the right move and checkmate a classmate before class.