March 3, 2006 – Students from seven of the territory's public and private schools were in top academic form Monday, as they competed against each other for first place in the territorial Quiz Bowl competition and a chance to represent the Virgin Islands on the national level.
At the end of six grueling games – where participants fielded questions in subjects including math, science, geography, current events and sports – only four teams remained, leaving players anxious and determined to win the championship rounds on Tuesday morning.
After the afternoon matches, players took some time to regroup and discuss potential strategies for the next rounds of competition – which ranged from building team confidence to boning up on categories like current events.
"It's all about confidence," said Antilles School senior Kichelle Webster after winning a match against St. Croix's Educational Complex. "You can never doubt yourself for a minute."
Webster, and other Antilles teammates, said one of their other strategies was assigning particular categories to certain players. Webster said she was supporting the team with her knowledge of the Bible and other religious events and documents, while other players specialized in Greek mythology, math, biology and politics.
The team, who in another match lost to Charlotte Amalie High School, said they would be concentrating on brushing up their math skills for Tuesday, since many of Monday's questions were "difficult" to answer.
"The competition has also been pretty tight," said Mark Davis, a senior at Antilles. "All Saints is a really good team and so was Charlotte Amalie. But we're in to win this, and we're pretty confident that we'll come out on top tomorrow."
However, other teams in the competition – held this year at the Palms Court Harborview Hotel on St. Thomas – shared Antilles' confidence, leaving the question of who will win Tuesday's games open for debate.
"What we plan to do is win our first game tomorrow, which will take us to the championship round," said St. Croix Country Day School junior Nick Goldman after the team wrapped up Game 11 Monday with a victory over CAHS. "Then we hope to finish the day undefeated. We're going to blitzkrieg the other teams hard and fast."
Gathered around a table after Monday's event, the Country Day team said they would also be boning up on current events, since questions in that category were challenging for them during Monday's game.
"We didn't answer as many current events questions correctly as I thought we should have, so that's something we have to work on," said team coach Kevin Marin. "But I think that we have a good, strong team, and we just have to clear our minds for tomorrow."
Goldman and Peter Roussev, the Country Day team's captain, said they would also try to slow down when answering questions during Tuesday's competition.
"We were trying to go fast, to get the game over with," said Roussev, a senior. "But for every question that we got wrong, we were always this close to the right answer."
Eliminated in the past two days of competition were the Ivanna Eudora Kean High School on St. Thomas, Complex and St. Croix's Central High School.
Monday's matches and winners were:
–game 5: Complex, 155; Eudora Kean, 130.
–game 7: Country Day, 300; Central 25.
–game 8: Antilles, 250; CAHS, 300.
–game 9: All Saints, 280; Central, 75.
–game 10: Antilles, 225; Complex, 175.
–game 11: Country Day,195; CAHS, 45.
Good Hope School on St. Croix forfeited game six to All Saints. According to Diana Parker, executive director of Beacon Schools and a moderator for the competition, the team will not be participating in this year's competition.
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