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TMP chess team wins another title

12/5/2012

By DIANE GASPER-O'BRIEN

dobrien@dailynews.net

Different academic activity, but similar results.

One year removed from reigning state champions in scholars bowl competition, Thomas More Prep-Marian High School now is having similar success in chess.

The Monarch chess team won its fourth consecutive team title Saturday, scoring a season-high 16.5 points to outdistance runner-up Valley Center by two points at a six-team tournament at the Northfield School of the Liberal Arts in Wichita.

TMP juniors Jacob Brull and Ryan Hammerschmidt each scored 4.5 points (out of a maximum possible of six) to finish second and third, respectively, among the 39 individuals participating. Completing the Monarchs' scoring in helping them go 4-for-4 this year were senior Bill Wiebe (four points, 11th place) and freshman Patrick Kepka (3.5 points, 15th place).

The Monarchs now are off until second semester when they resume action Jan. 26 at Onaga.

Local scholars bowl squads at Colby

The Thomas More Prep-Marian High School scholars bowl team got back on the winning track Tuesday by finishing second in the black bracket of the Colby Tournament.

The Monarchs went 6-1 on the day in the black bracket, with its only loss being to Oakley. TMP placed second in that bracket, which was won by Goodland.

It was the top team finish of the season for TMP, which is accustomed to winning tournaments after accumulating a 315-52 record (.858 winning percentage) the past five years and winning back-to-back state titles in 2010 and '11.

Hays High School also competed in the black bracket and went 3-4 on the day.

The junior varsity squads for both local schools also participated in the tourney, with TMP going 4-2 on the day and finishing second. HHS' JV record was unavailable.

That concluded first-semester action for the local schools, which both will resume action Jan. 10.

The Monarchs (20-8 overall) will begin the new year at the Mid-Central Activities Association tourney at Hoisington, where TMP will try to win its fifth league title in a row, while Hays High will compete in the Ellis tournament.