Quiz Bowl ends season with national showing

A First-Person Perspective


Submitted Photo: Kate Lockwood

Junior Peter Blanchfield and seniors Bailey Troth, Coleman Thompson, Phoebe Pannier, and Paul Watkins competed at Quiz Bowl Nationals over Memorial Day weekend. The team finished 142 out of approximately 340 teams.

Peter Blanchfield, RubicOnline Editor

For the fourth year in a row, Quizbowl sent a team to the National Tournament over Memorial Day weekend. The National Tournament held in Atlanta, Georgia had 304 teams in it this year from across the country including 25 teams from Minnesota. We flew out to Atlanta on Friday afternoon, after checking into the hotel we went to play some scrimmage rounds

to help us get into the state of mind needed for Quizbowl.

The real competition started the following morning at 8:30 A.M., each round consisted of two 9-minute halves during which a 10 point “toss-up” question would be read for both teams to answer, if a team answered the question correctly their team earned three bonus questions worth up to 30 points. Only 4 kids can play at a time for a team, so if you bring more students, then the extras must sit and watch.

We started off the morning on a 2-2 start. To make playoffs you have to finish 6-4 so we knew we had to pick it up. Unfortunately in our next game we lost by only 5 points on the last question of the game, a real heart-breaker, so we were 2-3 heading into lunch. During this lunch break we talked over our strategy and refocused on what we needed to do to make playoffs.

Following lunch we rattled off two strong wins in a row, to bring our record to 4-3. Our next game both teams came in 4-3 so we knew this was going to be a tough game. At the half we were down by 90 points which is a large lead, but not insurmountable. Our team then went on a great run to just edge the other team by 20 points pushing us to 5-3, just on the edge of the playoffs.

By this point in the day, everyone was starting to get tired from the day-long onslaught of trivia and brain-work, but we knew that we still had a tough road ahead. In the next game we started off strong but ended up losing badly, as the other team dominated the second half. This meant we were 5-4 with one game left, the team we were playing next also was 5-4 so in essence this was a play-in game for the playoff rounds on Sunday.

We got the first two questions of the game and quickly got off to a lead over our opponent, but the other team didn’t give up over the course of the rest of the first half and third quarter they passed us and built a small lead. With about 4 minutes left in the game we called a timeout and checked the score, we were down by 60. We then preceded to get the next 2 questions in a row to cut the lead to 15, but tragically our opponent answered the next question and put the game out of reach for us.

So in the end we went 5-5, and ended up ranked as 142 out of the 304 teams there. Though not making the playoffs was very disappointing we were happy with the improvement we showed over last year when we finished 3-7.

The team that went to Nationals this year consisted of Junior Peter Blanchfield, and Seniors Bailey Troth, Coleman Thompson, Phoebe Pannier, and Paul Watkins. Our Coach was Dr. Lockwood.