Maine chess enthusiasts should be on guard. There's a new king in the state, and he's a Bowdoin student.

Jason Spector '09 took top honors at the 50th State Championship at Southern Maine Community College on April 22. According to the Web site, Spector tied Joseph St. Pierre, a Maine resident who attends the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth. St. Pierre won the 2005 and 2006 championships.

Spector said he began playing chess when he was five years old. He competed in his first tournament by age seven, and has been playing since.

"I really enjoy the challenge of the game and the completely different way of thinking involved," he said.

Spector said he expects to try to defend his supremacy in next year's tournament. He also plans on participating in Massachusetts's championship tournament this summer.