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Towson

Competition fierce at 10th Annual Baltimore County schools’ Chess Tournament

On a recent Saturday, rooks and pawns, bishops and knights, kings and queens were all flying across chess boards when 100 students representing 21 schools gathered at Cockeysville Middle School for the 10th Annual Baltimore County Public School Chess Tournament. Approximately 500 games later, the champions were crowned with winners taking home both individual and team honors.

The high school contest was a very tight race at the top with Hereford High narrowly edging out the team from Dulaney High by just a half point. On the middle school level, Dumbarton Middle took the top honors followed by Ridgely Middle and Cockeysville Middle, who both scored 13.5 points in the tournament. Honeygo came out on top over Hampton in the elementary division with our local Warren Elementary taking fifth place honors. Individually, Nathan Revelle of Cockeysville Middle came in at the top of the leader board in the middle school standings and Patrick Brayton of Dulaney placed third overall for high schools.

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The Dulaney Chess Club is an active one and is coached by math teacher, Hal McVeigh. The club has a large active attendance and was even going strong during the pandemic, when players could meet and play games against each other online. The five students selected to represent Dulaney at the BCPS Chess Tournament earned their spots through “challenge” matches.

According to Mr. McVeigh, “three of our five players were freshmen, so we expect to be a strong club for a long time moving forward.” The Dulaney team included Patrick Brayton, Luke Du, Steven Anton, Sahil Nilkanthche and George Darraj with most of the team placing in the top 10 of the tournament. Other local representatives included the Warren team of Matthew Blake, Kareena Saywack, Anabel Koch, Boubacar Kanoute and Ryan Baldwin. On the middle school level, Nikhil Lazarev, Victor Sanda, Maadhav Kalaiselvan, Kevin Wang and Jing Wei Lau represented Ridgely with Nathan Revelle, Colby Kaminsky, Ryan Lin, Gabe Darraj and Luke Ritter on the Cockeysville roster.

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Glenn Segal, science teacher and Chess Club adviser at Cockeysville Middle, has long been the champion of chess in BCPS and has worked diligently to build up the program. In 2019, the last year before the pandemic, a record-setting 282 participants took part in the Ninth Annual BCPS Chess Tournament.

Mr. Segal introduced chess to a large number of students over the years. In particular, he was a direct influence on Mr. McVeigh, who was not only his student in 6th grade science but was a member of the Cockeysville Chess Club during his middle school years. Mr. McVeigh was one of the first few students inducted into the Cockeysville Chess Club Hall of Fame and he remembers, “it was a great experience where I met some friends that I still keep in touch with today.”

This is Mr. Segal’s last year running the tournament, as he retires from BCPS, and he expressed his thanks for all the support given to BCPS chess over his 31 years and his pride in everyone affiliated with the program — players and coaches alike – for making it the best in the state.

Thank you, Mr. Segal for all your passion and dedication to the students at Cockeysville and across BCPS. Enjoy your retirement!


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