The Student News Site of St. Charles East High School, 1020 Dunham Road, St. Charles, Illinois 60174


The Student News Site of St. Charles East High School, 1020 Dunham Road, St. Charles, Illinois 60174


The Student News Site of St. Charles East High School, 1020 Dunham Road, St. Charles, Illinois 60174


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Successful rebooting of the East Chess Team lands them at state

Yzabelle De Luna
The Chess Team photographed with Adviser Robert Livermore at their send off on February 8.

Determination was felt throughout the Chess Team as it was revealed that they had made it to state with the support of their advisor, Robert Livermore.

The Chess Team’s performance this year was nothing short of amazing, considering its reboot in 2022. In the year of its premiere, the team did not qualify for state. However, the team is experiencing a strong comeback this year, as it was their first time making it to state. This accomplishment is accompanied by an increased number of members and passionate, hard work.|

“This trip down to state was the first one for the program in quite a while. We rebooted last year and did not qualify, so everyone was very excited to make it to state,” said Livermore.

On Thursday, Feb. 8, the Chess Team excitedly made their way to Peoria Civic Center, where the state competition was held. Following their qualification, the team was informed they were seeded 121st out of 128 total teams. However, they exceeded expectations after placing 74th out of 128.

Livermore expressed his pride for the team: “Based on our seeding at state, we were expected to win only once. The players did an excellent job in the first round upsetting a top-half seed.”

This was not an easy feat for the Chess Team. The increased number of members ensured the likelihood of fresh players.

Chess Team player Payton Lee considers seniors Ryan Cassady, Nick Loomis, Owen McNally and Justin Angara the team’s MVPs and appreciates their efforts. He expressed his pride, saying, “These seniors had zero experience with [the] chess team prior to this year, and they really stepped up to propel us to state. Without them, I can say with absolute certainty that we would not have qualified for state.”


Chess Team members Payton Lee (left) and Connor Stellato (right) playing side-by-side. Photo courtesy of Robert Livermore.

“If I had to describe the team, I would say that we are supportive of each other. I know that whether I win or lose my game, I can count on my team’s support and encouragement. We work well together,” said senior Owen McNally.

This achievement was not solely a testament to their abilities to adapt and work together as a team. This trip to state also tested their capacities physically and mentally.

“Each person has 55 minutes on the clock, with an extra five-second leeway per move,” said Lee. “This means that each game can last up to two hours.”

At state, the Chess Team played seven games. Each game lasted up to two hours, meaning up to 14 hours of chess were played over the weekend.

Regardless of their constraints, remarkable movement was seen within the team. More can be expected from them in the future as more experience is gained and the team further develops.

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About the Contributors
Ella Seaton
Ella Seaton, Staff Writer
Ella is a junior at East and loves writing and traveling. Ella plans to pursue a future in music journalism.
Yzabelle De Luna
Yzabelle De Luna, Graphics Editor
Yzabelle is a junior at East and loves getting involved in the arts. In her free time, she likes writing, drawing, and playing the oboe or piano.

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