RICHLAND, Wash. –   Hundreds of students  put on their thinking caps Saturday to play in one of the largest chess tournaments in the Tri-Cities.

134 students from 20 schools in the state played in the King’s Gambit Chess Tournament at the Christ The King in Richland.  Some students came from as far as Spokane, Seattle  and Othello to play. 

Washington Elementary Chess Champions hosted the event, in which kids who win three out of five games played could qualify for state finals which will be held in Tacoma in April.

The kids ranged from Kindergarten through 12th grade. The Chess coach at Christ The King, Richard Coghlan says the game has many perks for the kids.

“I think chess is great for the kids… it teaches them everything from tactics and forward thinking., thinking ahead and strategy as well as how to deal together,” says Coghlan.