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Joliet Central High School chess team invited to nationals

Joliet Central High School’s Chess Team competed in the IHSA State Chess Tournament in Peoria on Feb. 11 and has been invited to attend the National Chess Tournament.
Joliet Central High School’s Chess Team competed in the IHSA State Chess Tournament in Peoria on Feb. 11 and has been invited to attend the National Chess Tournament.

JOLIET – Joliet Central High School’s Chess Team competed in the IHSA State Chess Tournament in Peoria on Feb. 11 and has been invited to attend the National Chess Tournament.

The Joliet Central team finished 61st out of 150 teams and made a record of 4-3, which ties with its best record at state set last year.

The JCHS Chess Coaches are Luis Medina and Rodney Coatney Sr., and the senior captains are Cesar Escutia and Gavin Bennett.

A highlight of the team’s success at the state finals includes chess team member Mozzel Rodriguez winning six of her seven games, finishing in the top 10 on her respective board and ranking in eighth place. She is the first player in Joliet Central High School history to win a medal at state for chess.

Other notable accomplishments included team captain Cesar Escutia finishing 71st overall out of more than 1,800 high school students, and Tyson Guseman earning four out of a potential seven points for his respective board.

Two freshmen also contributed to the team's success, as Hunter and John entered the game for one round and both won.

Joliet Central High School also had two other players finish a half point away from a medal – Jaime Huichapa and Daniel Singh, both finishing with 5.5 points. Because of the team’s overall success, the members have been invited to attend the National Chess Tournament in Tennessee.

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