In just its fourth year back in business after a 20-year hiatus, the Riverside-Brookfield High School chess team posted another strong showing this season, finishing 21st overall out of 130 teams in the IHSA state tournament on Feb. 12-13 at the Peoria Civic Center.

The team went 5-2 in the state tournament, with wins over Rich South, Plainfield Central, Bloomington, Schaumburg and Andrew. Losses came to state champion Niles North and Lincoln Way Central, which placed 17th overall.

Junior Jake Dluhy went 5-1-1 and finished 16th out of 130 on 2nd board. Dluhy is now 16-4-1 in three years at the IHSA state tourney. He placed fourth overall in 2009 on 6th board and has finished in the top 20 each year.

Meanwhile, sophomore Jimmy Hamera went 5-2 to place 20th on 4th board. Other team members notching wins at the state tourney were sophomore James Wang (four), junior Nick Rauba (three), junior Brad Wilson (three and one draw), sophomore Alex Radicanin (two and one draw), senior Hugh Berglind (two) and freshman Lee Tang (two).

Senior captain Phil Willoughby, a four-year starter, had three draws on 1st board, the most difficult bracket in the tournament.

The team’s overall record in 2009-10 was 16-5 and improved on RB’s 2009 state meet showing in which the Bulldogs finished 28th, despite the loss of five starters from last year’s squad.

The team’s coach/sponsor is science teacher David Monti.

Heaven sent

Minnie Glosniak of North Riverside is the recipient of the first annual Richard N. Scheck Angel Award, which was presented by the award’s namesake at the Mayor’s Committee of Neighborhood Services meeting Feb. 23.

The award is presented to a North Riverside resident who has shown extraordinary caring for his/her neighbors.

Glosniak was recognized for volunteering to collect funds for the Salvation Army, helping distribute surplus produce and bread to needy families and providing transportation to the CEDA Office for those who needed assistance paying their utility bills even after she was recovering from injuries sustained in a serious accident.

An example cited by Carol Spale, neighborhood services coordinator, in presenting the award involved a woman from another suburb who needed assistance filling out applications for financial assistance.

When Glosniak heard of the woman’s plight, she went to her home and not only helped her with the applications but also stayed and listened to her concerns.

“This person was a complete stranger but it made no difference to this lady, who tries to reach out to everyone,” Spale said.

Music makers

Twelve music students from Riverside-Brookfield High School were invited to participate in the Metro Suburban Conference Honor Band Festival at Fenton High School on Feb. 16.

After rehearsing all day, the band, made up of students from all of the schools in the conference, played a concert. Among the RB students involved were Sarah Buksa, Kevin Dihn, Dovas Lietuvninkas, Annie Mitchell, Ben Mitchell, Maddy Muntean, Sarah Otmanski, Becky Pendola, Kyle Perfect, Phil Priorello, Sam Romo and Joe Wilkinson.

Earlier this school year, several music students received Melissa and Diane Meindl Scholarships, given to assist students who have expressed a desire to study voice with a private teacher.

Recipients for the 2009-10 school year included Alex Campillanos, Kevin Dihn, Kenzo Esquivel, Isaac Lauritsen, Elliot Louthen, Maggie McLaughlin, Ben Mitchell, David Monreal, Samuel Romo and Max Recht.