Hartford Area Scholastic Chess League  

We organized chess matches between schools in the greater Hartord, Connecticut area.
Unfortunately, activities did not recover after Covid.
Schoolbusses were not available any more. This is despite the fact we paid for it.
To quote Simsbury High School's administration for a reason: "chess is not a sport".
Other types of transportation are not allowed.

A team usually consists of six players. However, the more the better. A winner is determined by adding all individual scores.
We play two or three rounds with the time usage limited by a chess clock (game/10 min. plus 5 sec. delay per game per player).
US Chess Federation (USCF) rules including "touch move" apply.

Matches 2020/21, no activities

Matches 2019/20

  • Nov 15: Simsbury at UConn in Storrs: 16.5 - 27.5
  • Feb 24: Simsbury at Hall: 20 - 5


2/24/2020: Simsbury at Hall: 20 - 5

2/24/2020: Hall coach Norman Burtness

11/15/2019: Simsbury at UConn on 22 boards: 16.5 - 27.5

More pictures


Team members need to be attending the same school at least part time. A team does not need 'official' support from their school (not all schools support chess).
We try to play on school days after school. The host also provides some snacks and drinks during introduction of the players.
Both team use a line-up (boards #1 - #6) ordered by decreasing strength of player. Use USCF rating for this when possible. Visitors will have white on boards #1, #3 and #5. Chess notation is not required. The matches are not rated - for participants USCF membership is not required.
USCF rules apply (touch move etc). Clocks set at game/10min plus 5 sec delay. The organizer of the host will act as TD when necessary only.
As tie breaker another match with blitz games (timed game/5min without delay) will be played. In case the match is still tied, the result(s) from the lowest board(s) of the slow game(s) will be dropped until the tie is broken. If still tied, the match result is a draw.

How to join

We just started - we'd like more schools to participate.
At first, we'd like more friendly matches. Later on, we could expand that to a regular league, perhaps an annual tournament, or another format. In case you are interested to join, or if you have question or comments, please contact:

  • Gert Hilhorst, chess parent at Simsbury High School: 860-392-8629 or gert@hilhorst.us
  • Parag Joshi, history teacher at Manchester High School: b11pjosh@mpspride.org
  • Norman Burtness, physics teacher at Hall High School West Hartford: norman_burtness@whps.org
  • Miles Coulter, English teacher at Northwestern Regional #7 High School in Winsted: mcoulter@nwr7.org
  • David Ressel, math/physics teacher at Torrington High School: dressel@torrington.org
  • Nelson Castaneda, math professor at CCSU in New Britain: CastanedaN@ccsu.edu


US Chess Federation      CT Chess Association       MA Chess Association
New Britain Chess Club      UConn Chess Club       Simsbury       CCFC       Marshall Chess Club
Chessbase (chess news)       Chess-steps (chess instruction books)
Continental Chess Assocation (a for profit organizer of large tournaments)
Clearinghouse (an attempt to list all rated tournaments in New England)
Chess on CBS 60 minutes: Bobby Fisher (1972)     Magnus Carlsen (2012)