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Chess Club

The two-time national champion (2011 and 2013) chess club at St. John Vianney High School teaches students how to move the pieces, how to write and read notation, and deeper strategy. Students will gain experience by playing one another informally during practices as well as during intramurals, by playing other students from area schools on weekend tournaments and in local league play, and by playing in a national tournament in the spring.

Club Moderators: Mr. TJ Keely (

Eligibility: available to all students who wish to join

Season: The chess club calendar is broken into three seasons. 

  • The first season consists of practice and intramural games in which students play against one another to crown a champion from each class.  
  • In November, the second season begins in which we practice and play against other area schools at weekend tournaments and league play.  The season concludes with a state tournament.
  • In the spring, the final season of the year begins in which we practice and train for the national tournament.

Meetings: Chess club members are guided through weekly lessons after school that include opening tactics, middle game strategies, and endgame methodology.  The combination of lessons and tournament experience have helped our chess club be one of my most successful in the nation.

Possible Activity Points: up to 30 points


Each student is expected to attend practices as often as possible and alert one of the coaches when he cannot attend.  A respect for teammates and should always be maintained and an attitude and bearing consistent of Vianney ambassadors is expected from each student, especially when representing the school outside of the building.