Lower Bucks County Scholastic Chess League




With the influx of new schools, we wanted to have a central place with information about how the league runs for reference. Feel free to bookmark this site for future reference.


League Commissioner: Ed McKenney (schach@comcast.net)

Chair: Shawn Simmons (simmsm@abington.k12.pa.us)

League Email:  Varsitychess@gmail.com 


LBCSCL Schedule


Mid October: Deadline to register for the year.

Early November: Schedule released.

Final week of February: End of regular season

Beginning of March: Playoffs begin.


Schedule/Scheduling Matches

  • Schedule will be released in November. It will be arranged by week and scheduled for Tuesdays. Coaches will email/call to confirm matches with their opponent. Every attempt should be made to play matches on the assigned dates.
  • Unfortunately, sometimes this is not possible to schedule a match due to school calendars. In these events, there will be a season end date. All matches must be played prior to this date. Any unplayed match will be a double forfeit on the season end date.
  • If you feel a team is intentionally not playing their match or "ducking" please contact the commissioner so they may intervene.
  • Please contact opponent coach prior to just showing up for a match.
  • Teams should arrive to their scheduled matches by 3:30. Every attempt should be made to arrive by 3:30.
  • Addendum 11/17/2017:  We understand that matches need to be rescheduled from time to time due to school schedules. However, if you confirm your match, then cancel on the day of the match, the opposing coach has the right to request a forfeit. The league prefers all games be played; however, canceling the day of the match creates a tremendous inconvenience to the opponent. 
  • Addendum 6/6/2019: If teams are scheduled to play twice in a season and a team cancels in the first half of the season, the inconvenienced team may require the canceling team to play a double match on the next scheduled matchdate. The canceling team does not have the right to refuse if asked. Refusal will lead to a double forfeit for both matches for the cancelling team. 


Prior to the Match

  • Your team should have a ranking system. You should come into your league matches knowing who will play each board. Your players should be ranked as One Board, Two Board, Three Board, Four Board, and Fifth Board. One board should be your best player. Five board should be the lowest of your starters.
  • When available, current USCF ratings must be used to rank your team. If a player has played a USCF match within the last year, their rating is current. USCF players must play your top boards with unrated players filling in behind them. Coaches may use discretion on players within a 50 point window of each other.
  • If your school does not have chess clocks, please let the opposing school know so they can bring theirs.



  • Matches will follow all USCF rules. Below are highlights of important rules but all rules should be enforced.
    • Touch move
    • Not taking notation waives rights of players
  • Matches are assumed to be g60. This means that each player has an hour to complete their moves. In the event of a double match OR one team has traveled over 45 minutes to play a game (I.E. traffic or long distance) the match may be reduced to a g45. For a game to be reduced, both coaches must agree. If one coach does not agree to the reduction, the game must be played as a g60.
  • CELLPHONE/TECHNOLOGY policy: USCF does not allow for cellphone usage during matches. Phones should be powered down or placed on silent during matches and remain of until all five boards have been decided. To avoid potential issues of using phones in the bathroom (ie using a chess engine) we are going to implement this policy. If a player needs to use the restroom, their phone must be given to their coach until they return to the playroom. We hope this eliminates issues going forward.
  • This does not apply to playoff matches. Playoff matches must be settled in g60 time limit.
  • 5 second delay should be used when available.
  • Teams will line up their one board to play the other school's one board. Two boards play two boards, etc.
  • The home team will play white on boards 1, 3, and 5. Home team plays black on 2 and 4.
  • Black selects which side the clock goes on.
  • Each board is worth one point. Draws are worth half a point to each team. Winning teams have the most points. Some leagues weight the boards differently, we use 1 point per board.
  • Home coaches must provide a board (blackboard/active board) with complete listing of players for both schools. This serves as the scoreboard.
  • 8/24/22: The home school's policy on mask wearing will dictate the match. If the home school requires masks, then the visitor must comply.
  • There should be no communication in any way, shape, or form between players and coaches or among teammates once the match begins. Communication can be cause for a game to be forfeited. Any issue with communication should be reported to commissioner/chair following the match.
  • In the event that boards must be forfeited due to a lack of available players, teams must forfeit the lowest boards. For example, if Team A only has four players, they must forfeit the #5 board. 

Post Match

  • Following the match, it is the home coach's responsibility to email commissioner and chair the results of the match. This must be done ASAP but no later than 24 hours following the match.

Reports can be as simple as


Philadelphia 3-2 New York

Player 1-0 Player

Player 1-0 Player

Player 1-0 Player

Player 0-1 Player

Player 0-1 Player 



  • Playoffs will begin in late February or early March.
  • Standings for the playoffs will be listed on the website and will be as up to date as possible. Tiebreakers will also be outlined on the homepage. Note, games not played prior to the season end date will not count for or against a team. For example, an 8-1 record will hold the same value as an 8-2 record.  The tiebreaks will be followed after teams are ranked by WINS, not winning %.

  • In the event that playoff matches end in a draw, teams will switch color and play a five minute blitz match on all five boards. Colors should be switched to give the advantage to visiting team. Teams may not alter their lineups from the original match. If a player has left the building, they forfeit that board. If that blitz ends in draw, the game will be awarded to the home team/higher seed.


  • Player eligibility: Players must come from the same campus of the school they will represent. For example, if your district has a north and a south, those schools cannot combine. In the event that your school has a middle/elementary school, up to two of your five boards may come from the school directly related to your school. For example, Smithville Junior High students could play for Smithville Senior High on 2 boards.


League Cost: $65. This money covers trophies for the teams and highest ranking players. Each league team is guaranteed two trophies.