By Cedric Vitug
As the season for Academic League comes to an an end, the annual staff versus students match was held on Wednesday, Nov. 17. The students won with the final score of 69-26.
“It’s always fun and this year I will get to participate. I’ll get to join in the fun or the disgrace, either way,” English teacher and varsity coach Jason Good said.
Prior to the match, students had only won one out of three staff versus students matches. However, varsity co-captain of Academic League and junior Gilbert Neuner expected this match to be another victory for the students.
“It’s always a great opportunity to interact with kids in different sort of a way—competing against them,” junior varsity Academic League coach Joseph Szakovits said.
Szakovits and Good led the staff team. Advanced Placement/International Baccalaureate coordinator Jared Phelps, AP Human Geography teacher James Goodwin, AP Biology teacher Michelle Mardahl and English nine and 10 teacher Raymond Chhan rounded out the roster.
“To be quite honest, we didn’t prepare for this match like we do for most matches. We didn’t actually have an ‘orthodox practice’. We just went in there and winged it. We were confident,” Neuner said.
The match began with the first toss-up question which was answered incorrectly by the staff team. They started out with a negative point as the students took a lead with nine points. The staff team finally earned three points with Szakovits answering. The first timeout was called by the students with the score at 32-4.
“As knowledgeable as teachers are, we’re not necessarily used to the way the questions are set up, like being able to buzz in quickly, having that level of confidence,” Szakovits said.
As the match continued the teachers gained more points through Phelps and Goodwin. However the students were able to take the lead with Good calling for a timeout. The score at the time was 35-28.
“Mr. Phelps getting that question was really the highlight of the match, I think for everybody. Just him buzzing in and saying, ‘Beethoven’ after only about three words were said in the question,” Szakovits said.
After the final timeout, the varsity team gained more points with a pencil and paper question answered by Neuner. The staff team lost two points answering two toss-up questions incorrectly. Varsity answered the final set of questions ending the match.
“I’m glad that we were able to relinquish our title and to be honest, I’m not all that surprised. I saw it coming from a mile away,” Neuner said.
According to Good, preparation for next season will involve reaching out to Bonita Vista Middle School’s Knowledge Bowl program, to get incoming freshmen interested in joining Academic League. As for the varsity team, they plan to resume practices during the next late spring.
“As the coach, I am secretly-not so secretly, proud of how well the students do. It is impressive how well they do during these matches. I like to see other staff members coming out and show their support for them, because Academic League does put a lot of time and effort into this program,” Good said.