By Lorin Enns
Varsity quizzers took second place in the Varsity Quiz Silver League championships on Friday, March 1 at the KLVX-PBS studios. Among other members of VQ, senior co-captain Tyler Phung, who led the team, participated on the team that took third in the U.S. Department of Energy’s annual Science Bowl on Feb. 2, from which they won a $1500 prize.
“My favorite part about competing this year was definitely my teammates,” senior Hannah Young said. “I think on a lot of teams there’s a lot of petty competition and drive to one-up each other, but our team worked so well as a unit to work together against the other teams and build each other up, which was very cool. This was my first year on the team, so I wasn’t ready for how quickly everyone answers the questions. There were many questions in which a lot of us would know the answer, but it was whoever got to the buzzer first that could answer the question. Varsity Quiz definitely helped me think on my feet and become less hesitant and more confident with my answers overall.”
Practices for Varsity Quiz began at the very beginning of the year, with the team meeting every Monday and Friday from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m., and Science Bowl practice followed immediately after. As the championship closed in, the team relied on their practices to get themselves ready to compete. Although the team lost the final game, they still felt pride for making it so far.
“The [VQ] team made it to the seventh championship game in a row,” Mr. Aberman, VQ advisor and AP U.S. History teacher, said. “Whenever you go to the championship game for anything, you can’t be disappointed. They didn’t win the game; they lost the game to Clark. That’s a shame, but, personally, I thought they did fantastic. I know they’re probably happy about it, too.”
Some members of Varsity Quiz also had the opportunity to compete in the Science Bowl on Feb. 2. The team’s lineup included juniors Saad Chowdhry and Max Lipshutz, seniors Tyler Phung and Noel Tran and sophomore Josh Hettinger. The Science Bowl follows a slightly different process than VQ, with the a bonus question in every round and multiple-choice questions included as opposed to the strictly free-response questions in Varsity Quiz. The team finished third, and the $1500 prize will go right back into the program to fund the team in the future.
“My favorite part about the Science Bowl was just competing with other schools and answering questions,” junior Saad Chowdhry said. “My favorite subject in science is biology. I like understanding processes; it just comes naturally to me.”
With the season ending, the team is preparing to say goodbye to their seniors. Senior members of both teams have participated for years, making the end of the season a bittersweet experience for those moving on.
“I’ll definitely miss all of my teammates from over the years like the seniors who graduated in years prior, as well as the underclassmen who I must leave behind,” Phung said. “The past, present, and future of Coronado’s Varsity Quiz all hold a special meaning to me.”