Cason Wilson, a 6th grade student at West Middle School and active member of the First Lutheran School Chess Club, was awarded first place in the K-12th grade Rated Under 1100 section with 4.0 points in the first Oklahoma Scholastic Chess Organization (OSCO) tournament of the season. At the tournament hosted by Carl Albert High School held September 24th in Midwest City, nearly 175 children from around the state were in attendance. Wilson joined the FLS Chess Club in February and has improved nearly 400 rating points since his rating was established. In this one tournament alone, his rating improved over 80 points after securing solid wins against many worthy opponents. “It was a tough tournament, all of my opponents played very well. I am glad that I got the chance to play such challenging people because I learned something from every game.” Wilson said. Of the seven First Lutheran School Chess Club students who participated, none finished the day with any less than 1.0 points and a few narrowly missed the 3.0 minimum to receive a medal. The club is looking forward to remaining active in the OSCO scholastic tournament season. OSCO is a statewide organization, operated by a large group of service oriented volunteers, with the support of donors and members, to effectively promote and improve Oklahoma Scholastic Chess for our youth, so that more can experience the benefits of chess. They organize one tournament each month throughout the school year which are held at different chess club schools in the Oklahoma City and Tulsa area. OSCO has expressed interest in the First Lutheran School Chess Club hosting a scholastic tournament in the 2017/2018 school year due to their active support and involvement in the chess community and scholastic tournament season.
The FLS Chess Club is open to all students in Ponca City, grades 1st through 12th, and currently has twenty active members from eight different schools. The FLS Chess Club meets weekly on Tuesday evenings from 5:30pm-7:30pm, come and go, in the First Lutheran School Early Childhood Education building that also houses the school gym. You’ll park on Liberty along the south side of the building and enter through the doors that are directly east of the playground. All skill levels are welcome, from beginners to advanced. The mission of the First Lutheran School Chess Club is to develop and improve chess skills in a supportive environment, to encourage each student to their full potential, and to nurture specific chess-related skills including strategic thinking, problem solving and self-confidence, and to promote the value of chess throughout the community. Students are required to submit a one-time $35 membership fee. The fee helps cover the cost of supplies for the club as well as the student’s own scorebook. Membership is required to participate; however, there are limited scholarships available if needed. Please contact Jennifer Vaughan, FLS Chess Club Founder and Coordinator, at 580-716-1931 or email [email protected] with any questions, to receive the necessary sign-up form for students, or to volunteer to assist with the club.