About 80 Dublin elementary students spent their Saturday morning last week with knights, kings and bishops.

About 80 Dublin elementary students spent their Saturday morning last week with knights, kings and bishops.

The Dublin Elementary Chess Classic returned Feb. 25 after a three-year sabbatical to give students an opportunity to test their chess skills in a competitive setting.

Helen Kamlet, Bailey Elementary PTO chess club chair, said the tournament started seven years ago, but hasn't been held for the past three years.

"We're bringing it back," she said. "We hope to get big so all the schools come."

At the Feb. 25 contest, students from Glacier Ridge Elementary, Deer Run Elementary, Chapman Elementary, Bailey Elementary and Wright Elementary faced off by grade level.

"For most of the kids, this is their first tournament," Kamlet said, adding that they decided to hold the competition to give students experience.

The elementary schools have chess clubs that begin meeting in the fall, and the tournament gave them a chance to work under pressure.

"We want them to get comfortable playing in city-wide tournaments," Kamlet said.

Some students could even make it as far as Scioto High School senior Michael Vilenchuk, who recently returned from a world-level contest in Brazil.

"I placed 32nd in the world," he said.

Vilenchuk, who also coaches the Bailey and Wright Elementary chess teams, volunteered at the tournament along with some Scioto High School honor society students.

Bailey Elementary third-grader Ian Kwiatkowski isn't on the chess team, but learned the game from his dad. Coming off a first-round victory, he said he enjoys the mental stimulation of chess.

"It's a game of strategy," Kwiatkowski said. "I use it to work out my brain. I do better in school."

First-grader Ben Groce learned the game while he was in kindergarten.

"I like that you can play and move all of the pieces in different ways," he said. "And it doesn't matter about winning or losing."

The top three finishers in each grade division received awards, and a trophy also went to the school that earned the most awards at each level - this year the traveling trophy went to Deer Run Elementary School.

Students who earned awards are from first to third place: Kindergarten to first grade: George Liu, Bailey; Jeremy Grimm, Deer Run; Sushaant Chawla, Bailey; Second grade: Amogh Mahambare, Bailey; Ethan Chung, Deer Run; Brian Zhou, Bailey; Third grade: Jeffrey Liu, Bailey; Aditya Jambhale, Deer Run; Nayan Bandara, Deer Run; Fourth grade: Nikhil Sriva, Glacier Ridge; Stanley Cao, Deer Run; Jason Guo, Chapman; fifth grade: Maggie Feng, Deer Run; Emily Hu, Glacier Ridge; and Eric Cui, Bailey.