This week’s broadcast was the third quarterfinal competition of the Scholastic Games radio quiz show on WEOL (AM930 and FM 100.3).  Elyria now joins Avon Lake High and Amherst Steele as a semifinalist, with the fourth to be determined in next week’s contest between Grafton Midview and Vermilion.  Monday’s program, despite several rounds of questions with tie scores, concluded with a solid 330 to 180 victory for the Elyria team.  The Elyria team consisted of Anthony Schmitz, Seth Frabotta, and team captain Isaac Quast, who won the program’s “Standout Scholar Awarad,” an honor presented each week to the student who contributed the most to his or her team, as determined by scorekeepers. It includes a $50 prize on each program.  In this year’s first round of competitions, Schmitz won the award for the team.  It is an unprecedented coincidence that, like Elyria, the Avon Lake and Amherst academic teams each include two Standout winners.

Competing for North Ridgeville were Morgan Weppelman, Alex Hunt and team captain Alyssa Hlavacs, also a past “Standout Scholar” winner.  Like last week’s Avon Lake victory, Elyria’s victory resulted in domination during only one of the five rounds of questions.  The first round, titled the “Initial Round” in which all answers began with the same letter (“P,” including Palestine, the Pantheon, and Pachelbel), was a 50-40 point win dor North Ridgeville.  Elyria tied the score at 80-80 with a win in the second, the Current Events Round.  In round three, the first in which the quicker team to buzz in gets to answer first, was a Theme Round about Ohioans in the Civil War, mostly generals and future presidents.  After this round, which is usually dominated by one team, the tie remained: 110 to 110.

The next round almost always ends with a substantial lead for one of the teams.  Round four consists of sequences of clues leading to each answer, An answer following only one clue can earn a team 50 points, with subsequent clues worth lesser amounts of 40, 30, 20 or 10 points.  The first set described American patriot John Hancock.  Elyria scored after the third clue: thirty points.  Then clues about the Civil War’s Trent Affair, and those describing Britain’s Greenwich Observatory, stumped both teams.  The third clue about Mother Theresa brought 30 points to North Ridgeville.  The final set of clues were about the state of Tennessee.  The third clue mentioned Vanderbilt University.  A quick buzz ensued from North Ridgeville but the answer given was Kentucky.  Elyria hit on the next clue with the correct answer, ending the round with a ten point lead: 150 to 130.

The teams were eerily matched to this point, but the final round was a shocker.  It consists of over nine minutes of tossup and bonus questions.  The first question of the pair earns ten points for a correct answer and a chance to answer a bonus question for twenty points.  However, an incorrect answer to a tossup means a loss of ten points and it gives the other team an opportunity to answer.  Elyria surprisingly dominated, scoring 170 points to Ridgeville’s 40, yielding an impressive win and a trip to the semifinals in May to face Amherst Steele.

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