Valley students win Quiz Bowl tournament

By NICOLE SMITH, Daily Mountain Eagle
Posted 12/7/17

VALLEY — The Valley Junior High School fifth- and sixth-grade Quiz Bowl team recently won a tournament.

The students placed first Saturday at the East Lawrence Middle School Invitational Quiz Bowl Tournament in Trinity, beating the undefeated team of East Lawrence Middle. Six students make up Valley’s fifth- and sixth-grade Quiz Bowl team, and this was the first time for this particular group of students to compete and win a tournament.

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Valley students win Quiz Bowl tournament

Posted

VALLEY — The Valley Junior High School fifth- and sixth-grade Quiz Bowl team recently won a tournament.

The students placed first Saturday at the East Lawrence Middle School Invitational Quiz Bowl Tournament in Trinity, beating the undefeated team of East Lawrence Middle. Six students make up Valley’s fifth- and sixth-grade Quiz Bowl team, and this was the first time for this particular group of students to compete and win a tournament.

Fifth-grade students Hudson Brown, Ava Cordell and Matthew Myrick, and sixth-grade students Trace Allen, Haigan Usrey and Allie Hramec round out the Valley Quiz Bowl team.

Valley Junior High Quiz Bowl Sponsor Sandra Humphries said the students have been practicing for the tournament since October — four times a week. Humphries said students typically only compete in the Walker County Quiz Bowl Tournament held each February, but as Valley’s new Quiz Bowl sponsor, she wanted the students to have other opportunities to compete. That’s why she signed them up to participate in the East Lawrence tournament.

“We wanted to give them an opportunity to really have a better adventure,” Humphries said. “We were very surprised. We didn’t expect to win. We just went for practice to see what it was all about. Obviously, we did very well. ... I’m very proud of my kids.”

She said the tournament at East Lawrence consisted of students answering toss-up questions, completing a written portion and finishing with more toss-up and bonus questions.

She said once Valley’s students made it to the semifinals and prevailed, they participated in the final round, where they came away with the win. Valley competed against five other schools during the tournament.

“It was really intimidating when we got there on Saturday, because the announcer made a big deal about getting a new question set, ... and it was a harder question set than they had used in previous years,” Humphries said. “It can be questions anywhere from pop culture, history, religion, science questions, etcetera.”

Humphries said aside from practicing for the tournament, the students’ win wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Valley’s computer aide, Martha Aaron.

“She’s been a big factor in the success of these kids, and they love her to pieces,” Humphries said.

She also thanked the school’s administration for their support of the Quiz Bowl.

The Quiz Bowl students are set to participate in another competition in January and will then compete in the county tournament in February. In addition to winning the tournament at East Lawrence, one of Valley’s sixth-grade students placed third for answering the most questions correctly.

Humphries said having a Quiz Bowl team for students at Valley to excel in academics is important in shaping their character and future success.

“It gives those students who are never going to be able to compete as an athlete a chance to see that they are able to contribute and be a part of a team, and be part of something,” she said. “That is one of the biggest factors we’ve seen as educators throughout time, is if we can get children to feel like they are a part of the program, part of the school ... they’re going to have a more positive outcome and success in their lives. It’s very important they’re given opportunities to participate.”