Chess team provides a competitive opportunity for all students


Damian Trujillo

PHS senior Dennis Bugarin plays his first varsity game against Hoffman.

Damian Trujillo, Reporter

The PHS chess team has been competing on the IHSA level ever since Sean Fisher-Rohde took over as coach. But the team isn’t strictly for competition, and welcomes any and all students.

“It won’t be easy for every single person, but any type of person that wants to join can, and they’ll enjoy themselves,” chess team senior Shravan Natarajan said.

The chess coaches, Sean Fisher-Rohde and Adam Levy pride themselves on not being a strictly competitive team, but prioritizing a sense of team, community, and friendship between the players.

“I think the way we run the team, I like to think we have a balance,” Fisher-Rohde said. “People are very friendly, and people joke and have a good time, and sure, there’s always going to be a click or two, but I think we do a pretty good job of bringing those groups together.”

This doesn’t mean that the chess team isn’t competitive either. The team kicked off their 5 month IHSA season last Tuesday with a close loss against Hoffman Estates, with an upcoming match against Barrington.

“Chess is a lot of fun in Illinois because it’s super tough,” Levy said. “I mean, it’s kinda like Texas football, Illinois chess is about as good as it gets in junior chess, so if you’re looking for something that’s really competitive, chess is about as competitive as it gets in Illinois.”

The PHS chess team gets very competitive during their season, qualifying for state finals 3 years in a row. For new players who want a little more competitiveness, chess is an ideal activity to join.

All students are welcome to come check out the chess team after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays in room 327. For more information, email Sean Fisher-Rohde in the science department or Adam Levy in the special education department.