Daniel Draganoff ’18 Becomes Chess Expert

CBA senior Daniel Draganoff has achieved something very few chess players will in their lifetimes: a ranking of “expert.”

Draganoff achieved the ranking last month after just over three years of playing the game, making his feat even more impressive. The chess team & club held a special dinner for Draganoff, where they presented him with a new plaque that will hang at CBA.

The ranking of “expert” is given by the United States Chess Federation (USCF) when players have become rated between 2000 and 2199. Approximately 50,000 individuals are rated by the USCF, while just 2,500 of those players are rated above 2000.

“This is a culmination of a lot of hours of hard work,” Draganoff said. “For a very long time, I was stuck between 1900 and 2000, which was very frustrating. To finally break through after a year of trying, it meant a whole lot to me.”

As a sophomore, Draganoff was a key piece, among all seniors, to CBA’s U1900 National Chess Championship in 2015. Showing he has a resilient mindset, Draganoff lost his first match of that national championship, before winning his next six.

“I’m a very competitive person,” Draganoff commented. “When I first started playing, I would obsessively practice and became more and more competitive with my peers. I really wanted to be the best and I never got tired of playing this game. I really enjoy the challenges of it.”

While he has accomplished something so few will ever achieve, Draganoff has his sights set on his next accomplishment, which would be just as satisfying to him.

“My next goal is to break the CBA all-time record and become the best player ever from CBA,” he said. “The number is 2055 and I am at 2046. Ten points to go, and it will be tough, but I think I can do it.”

The Shore Chess League opens at CBA this upcoming Wednesday, where many of the students in the chess program will compete.


About Christian Brothers Academy:

Christian Brothers Academy (CBA) is a private, Catholic, academic preparatory school for boys located in Lincroft, New Jersey. Founded in 1959 and taught in the Lasallian tradition, CBA is dedicated to helping students become intellectually mature and morally responsible leaders for society. Through the combined efforts of the Office of Advancement and friends of the Academy, CBA awards over $1.3 million in scholarships and financial aid to current students. Experience the Academy at www.CBALincroftNJ.org.