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Wauwatosa East Chess Team Wins National Championship

The Wauwatosa East chess team has won the 2022 National High School Championship in the K-12 Unrated division, with three team members also placing in the individual top 15.

Held April 8-10 at the Renasant Convention Center in downtown Memphis, Tenn., the tournament featured 230 competitors representing 45 teams from across the United States. Students competed in seven rounds across the three-day tournament, with four-hour time limits for each game.

Wauwatosa East’s team also had a strong showing at the individual level, with Moses Bidwell placing second with six wins and a draw for a 6.5 score, John Koch placing 10th with six wins and Sam Tarrence placing 15th with five wins and a draw. 
Additionally, Elliot Oquist, Stephen Searing and Tyler Slye contributed to the unrated team’s success, with four wins each. Camden Cobb and Adam Putzer, competing in rated divisions, both posted winning records, as well.

The tournament was also notable for being the last for the Wauwatosa East team under coach Damon White, who is retiring as the team’s coach. White was encouraged by several students to start the chess team eight years ago, and it became a top team in Wisconsin in a matter of just a few years. 

“A national championship is an exciting accomplishment for any of our student teams, and we’re so proud of our chess team for their recent victory in Memphis,” said Dr. Demond Means, Superintendent of the Wauwatosa School District. “Competitions like these allow our students to go head to head against their most talented peers, encourage good sportsmanship and build character. We applaud our national chess champions and congratulate them on their success in representing Wauwatosa East and our entire school district community.”

The National High School Chess Championship is held each year under the umbrella of the U.S. Chess Federation, which governs official chess competitions nationwide and has a membership of more than 93,000 individuals and over 2,000 affiliated clubs and organizations. Its mission is to empower and enrich the lives of individual chess players and enhance communities through the game.