Panther Quiz Bowl took their show on the road for the annual taping of “It’s Academic.” The program is shot in Washington, D.C., and aired on three NBC affiliates. Area high school teams, consisting of three players each, vie for the title of Central Virginia champion, which Rappahannock won last year.
The game show format sets nine teams in play, with the three final winners facing off for the big victory. Panthers’ team consisted of Clayton Hatcher, Zach Huff and Nicholas Hipple. In a season-ending disappointment, Panthers were eliminated in the first round against Stuart’s Draft, 385-420.
Sophomore Nicholas Hipple revealed the multiple facets of the day in D.C. “When we got to NBC studios,” he said, “everyone opened the doors and was so happy to see us. They were so nice. We were early, so we walked down to McDonald’s. Since we were all wearing our team shirts, people in the restaurant started asking us trivia questions. That was fun.
“The set up in the studio is unique,” Hipple said. “We sat on regular bleachers, cramming as many people on as possible. Then, the stage manager taught us the audience cue signs – when to clap, when to end the clap. Everything was on cue for the audience. The first match went with other teams, and we watched. When it was our turn for the match, and we had to sit on the higher platform in the middle – dead center of the camera.”
“I was proud of the kids, and Rapp Band was awesome,” said coach Dave Naser. “We gave Stuart’s Draft their first win in 19 years on the show. I believe we were the best team, but that doesn’t always show. The boys were overly excited and did not remember that they were able to consult before giving their answers. They also forgot that there were large penalties in the last round for wrong answers: 20 points or a correct answer and 20 points deducted for an incorrect answer. We answered all the questions correctly in round two and earned a 25-point bonus. It was not enough because of two negative-20 penalties as the clock was running down.”
“In the last round,” Hipple said, “we kinda got buzzer happy because we had a nice comfortable lead. We missed quite a few questions and got a couple correct. That dropped our lead. We were a little sad that we lost because we initially had more points than the winner before we lost points for wrong answers and fell behind.
“We had a big lead going against some pretty good teams in the first game of the final round,” Hatcher said, “about a 60-point lead. We were feeling pretty confident, answering questions we thought we knew. But, we got several wrong. The other team came back to win. It was the toughest loss I’ve had in Quiz Bowl. If we had won, we would’ve gone on to the championship, so it was tough.”
“All in all, it was an honor to be on the show,” Naser said, “and we look forward to being invited back next year.
“I think the team was shocked to see that the competition season is finally over,” Naser said. “Clayton [Hatcher] especially deserves kudos for his leadership this year. We’re now setting our sights on new talent for next year. The team will have a strong core, since it will only be losing two players to graduation, Hatcher and Adam Carter.”
“This year was really cool,” Hatcher said, “because not much was expected of us since we’d lost so many strong players from last year. Instead, we ended up finishing overall better than we did last year.”
“It’s Academic” airs on WVIR-TV in Charlottesville on June 3.
– Melissa Delcour
At the weekly Assembly at Wakefield Country Day School April 18, teachers John McMahon and Welby Griffin, assisted by Kathleen Grove and Head of School for the Day Pierce Kiser, distributed awards that Wakefield students earned in the National Latin Exam competition.
Nationwide, more than 148,000 students participated in this exam. Over 60 percent of the Wakefield students who took the test received awards; this far exceeds the national average. Even more impressively, 61 percent of the School’s Latin 1 class earned gold medals in the contest.
The Wakefield winners are: in Latin IA-Outstanding Achievement Certificate and Purple Ribbon: Nick Leskovec and Tanner Perry; Achievement Certificate: Harrison Wells and Gage Landis; in Latin IB-Gold Medal: Carolina Leonard, Megan Kelley, Tad Wojcik, Aaron Corbett, Chris Parios, Rebecca Paulisch, Brier Clough, Monica Marciano, Abe Nolan, Joseph Dowell and Julia Weir; Silver Medal: Taylor Jones, Mollie Miller and Rahmet Rahimi; Magna Cum Laude Certificate: Brendan Martyn and Phoebe Wang; Cum Laude Certificate: Alyssa Hamilton.
In Latin II-Gold Medal: Ashlyn Ramey; Silver Medal: Jessica Leskovec; Magna Cum Laude Certificate: Karis Tschopp, Madison Romine and Willow Lynn. In Latin III-Silver Medal: Alex Foster, Rachel Paulisch and Sam Nolan; Magna Cum Laude Certificate: Sean Brown; Cum Laude Certificate: Grace Albert. And in Latin IV-Magna Cum Laude Certificate: Marc Cugnon and Cum Laude Certificate: Katie Brown.