The As Schools Match Wits Team is an academic competition team that competes against several other high schools. These schools consist of both public and private institutions, with members from grades 7-12. These teams can compete through quiz bowls or TV shows such as the High School Quiz Show on WGBH, and the As School Match Wits, on channel 57 WGBY. Ms. Chapley has been the coach of Frontier Regional’s team for the past eight years and shares with us that they have done exceptionally well in those years, placing within the top teams several times. Four years, ago, Frontier won the Blender Bowl, the ultimate event of the year, which will be happening again this year, and they are hoping for success once again.
This year’s members include Dan Dejnak, Emily Laus, Alex Sharp, Carsten Carey, Noah Bab,Evelyn Boyden, Malia Hanes, Oliver Sackery, Mary Laurens, Hallie Beeltje, PeterNewman, Genesis Locke, and James Leclerc – the largest team the school has everhad. Dan Dejnak, a former member tells us a little about his team: “This year,the team has been entirely overhauled, and I’m the only one left with anyexperience from last year. But I’m very excited about all of the new faces, andall of the new knowledge they have brought with them. I think this year we havea much better chance at making it to the second round of the ASMW show, and Ican’t wait to see how we do.” He has full certainty that his team will succeedthis year.
Ms. Chapley explains that a quiz bowl, one of several competitions they take part in, is an “organized competition with buzzers like you see in Jeopardy. Four people from each team compete in preliminary rounds to vie for a spot in the final. Questions range from pop culture, music, art history, math, science, literature, spelling.”
Recently, on November 4th, the team went to Boston’s PBS station to try out for the High School Quiz Show. Over 100 schools in Massachusetts come to try out, but only 16 teams will move on to film the show. The final teams are determined by the 16 highest scores. Ms. Chapley reports that they scored more than they have in the past, and they hope that it is enough to make the cut.
The team focuses on several topics and improves their knowledge by practicing through using previous competition questions. They also use trivia games found online to prepare for future competitions. Our team has defeated several schools in the past, including Wilbraham-Monson Academy, Deerfield Academy, Taconic, East Granby Ct – twice, and BART Charter School.
The team meets every two weeks or so, and is very flexible with members’ schedules. Anyone is allowed to join, including middle schoolers. Ms. Chapley encourages by saying that the meetings are filled with fun, and the kids are always enthusiastic and entertained.
The lineups for competitions are cast from a large pool of people during the meeting before it happens, so that different students will get to participate in each event.