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Edison wins first of three Firelands Challenge championship matches

Zoe Greszler • Mar 3, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Wednesday marked the first day of the Firelands Challenge Championship, bringing teams from Edison, Huron and St. Paul high schools together in a quest for an academic title. 

Edison is familiar with that honor, having won three straight. The Chargers put themselves in a good position to claim a fourth after winning round one at St. Paul. There are two more rounds, one at Huron and the other at Edison. The team with the most cumulative points will be crowned champion.

(NOTE: Pictures of the match are posted on this website.)

The Chargers began with and kept a healthy start Wednesday, leaving their opponents trying to steal points at every opportunity. Edison received its points for the first two categories, current events and American literature with a theme of “The Ilea,” and stole five points after the other teams missed their second category question.

Only Huron was able to answer its vocabulary question correctly, after being asked to select the correct definition of paucity, which was “a lack of.“

The first quarter ended with Huron and St. Paul tied with eight points and Edison leading with 15. The Milan group would only widen its gap as the game continued.

The Flyers took a hit with the next three categories, and none of the three teams were able to answer a world history question, though the Chargers were able to steal points off of their opponents wrong answers. 

Half time ended with the Chargers having 27 points and owning an 11- and 16-point lead over Huron and St. Paul, respectively.

The third quarter allowed the schools an opportunity to choose any of the 10 categories for its Team Choice question. If answered correctly, the team is awarded six points. However there is a 2-point penalty for an incorrect answer. The team may not use the same category again in either of the remaining championship rounds.

Both Edison and Huron received their bonuses after choosing foreign language-French and sports, respectively. St. Paul took the penalty after a question on cinema musicals The third period ended with Edison having 45 points, Huron 29 and St. Paul 15.

The Flyers had the biggest leg up in the final quarter, earning 10 points, thanks to a fast hand on the buzzer good for at least two steals and extra points in the second lightening round. 

The match ended with reigning champion Edison in the lead with 50 points, Huron, 32, and St. Paul, 25. The teams will add to these score next week as the championship continues.

Edison adviser Shirley Wallrabenstein said she felt her students did “very well,” adding their strong categories Wednesday included American literature, music theory and quotations.

“We’ve been working since since last spring,” Walrabenstein said. “They researched the categories over the summer, because a lot of these categories require outside research. … They’re very diligent. They put in the time.”

She said her team isn’t becoming over confident, though.

“We’ll keep working to improve,” Walrabenstein said. “Both Huron and St. Paul are excellent teams. We’ll keep working to get better.”

St. Paul adviser Kerri Hosang was also proud of her students’ performances. 

“I feel they did an awesome job,” she said. “They studied over the weekend, held study groups and got to school at 7:30 in the morning to practice and study. So I think they did the their best today. I think the nerves got the best of them, especially because they played in front of their peers. We’re just going ot continue to move forward.”

St. Paul team member Marcella Largent agreed.

“We were ecstatic to find out we made it (to the championship),” she said. “We were nervous today. It’s a huge honor. This is the first time St. Paul has been in the championship since 2007. … But we have fun with the competition. It’s not life or death, but we all work together as a team, which I think helps.”

The three teams will face off again for the second of three championship matches at 10 a.m. Monday at Huron High School.

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