SAN MARCOS — Though video games may rule in a teenager’s home, in the San Marcos High School library, it isn’t uncommon to see a crowd of students huddled around a chess, checkers or Scrabble board during lunch or after school.
Students perform their silent machinations: Eager observers occasionally lean in to suggest a move or a strategy in a whisper.
“There’s always at least four chess games going,” librarian Yvonne Brett said. “It’s really quite a phenomenon. . . . At the end of the game, they shake each other’s hand.”
After a recent match between juniors Sowoong Park and Francisco Sotelo, both 17, Sowoong summed up his victory like this: “If I see an opening, I just go for it.”
Junior Pierson Cepeda, 16, said he likes the strategy of chess. Though he considers himself a novice, Pierson said his game has improved as a result of watching Sowoong and others play.
“My friends are all teaching me strategies . . . how to pin down more than one piece if there’s an opening,” Pierson said.
An opponent’s piece is considered pinned when it cannot move because doing so would expose a more valuable piece to attack.
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