The GCHS varsity team consisting of Jayelen Knowles, River Richards, Jacob Johnston, Damion Sowell and Aaron Hawks, won their first four games of the day to advance to the finals, where they faced again the tough “Blue” team from Mont Harmon Junior High.
The Red Devils had a healthy lead up until the end of the fifth game, when Mont Harmon staged a comeback and stole the lead at the end. On the last question of regulation play, however, Grand correctly answered “oxen” to the question, “What animal was most commonly used to pull covered wagons?” Grand’s correct response tied the game and sent it into sudden-death overtime. Neither team answered the first tiebreaker question correctly, but Mont Harmon managed to answer the second one to win the game by five points, 120-115.
Since the tournament was a true double-elimination event, another finals game was then played between Grand County High and Mont Harmon. Again, Grand built an early lead in the 25-question contest, only to see Mont Harmon rally at the end. Mont Harmon trailed by the score of 75-65 heading into the final question, which was worth 15 points. The question was how to spell the word “neophyte” correctly. Richards buzzed in first and spelled the word correctly, giving the Red Devils a 90-65 victory. Mont Harmon took second place and Grand County Middle School’s Red team, which went 2-2, took home the third-place plaque.
While the varsity event was taking place in the GCHS auditorium, a separate junior varsity tournament was staged simultaneously in the GCHS music room, using the same sets of questions and a similar nine-team bracket. In the junior varsity tournament, San Rafael Junior High’s Blue team defeated its White team 140-40 to win the JV finals. Grand County High School’s JV team (consisting of Delanee Olsen, Amber Snyder, Ethan Clark, and Chelsey McLaughlin) placed third. Both GCHS teams were coached by Jeff Richards, while Grand County Middle School’s teams were coached by Mike Estenson.
A total of six area schools participated in the event, which was organized and conducted by the Southeast Education Service Center. Besides the four schools already mentioned, Canyon View Junior High and Helper Junior High also took part.
Grand County High is also scheduled to host a home Quiz Bowl tournament for high school students in grades 10 through 12 on Wednesday, Feb. 26. In addition to the two Moab events, six other SESC Quiz Bowl tournaments are scheduled throughout February and March – three middle-school level Quiz Bowl events for students in grades six through nine and three high school Quiz Bowl competitions for those in grades 10 through 12.