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FHS science teams prepare for bowl

Farragut High School’s Science Bowl Teams are gearing up for the Department of Energy Regional Science Bowl scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 21, at Pellissippi State Technical Community College.

The FHS staff sponsor, science teacher Kristin Baksa, said FHS normally does well at the event.

“We won first-place a couple of years ago and last year our Team One got second-place and Team Two got third-place,” she said.

The competition is a “‘Jeopardy’ quiz-bowl kind of thing,” Baksa said.

The students will compete in teams of four with one alternate for each team.

“They will ask the teams questions that have to do with chemistry, physics, biology, computer technology, math, earth science and astronomy,” Baksa said.

“They compete against other teams from the region and the winner gets an expense paid trip to the national competition in Washington, D.C.,” she added.

Baksa said the students take this competition quite seriously.

“They have been practicing for this since school started,” she said.

The students also decide whom the teams will be comprised of.

“They just come and practice and the kids decide. They decide based on two things, knowledge and the ability to buzz in quickly. You have to beat everybody to the buzzer, but you also have to have the right answer,” Baksa said.

Although the students take the competition seriously and are “in it to win it,” Baksa said they have fun with the practices as well.

“A lot of times we have to tell them to go home. They just get in there and start playing and they have a good time with it,” she added.

This year Team One will be comprised of seniors Dennis Meng and Hari Ganneson; juniors Thomas Dai and Shreyas Dahotre and senior Brandon Purlov as alternate.

Team Two will consist of senior Evan Lohrey, juniors Rouke Yang and Gabriel Garcia; sophomore Edward Ko and senior Maryli Cheng as alternate.

“I am registering three teams but I do not know if they are going to let us all play. They say they have a lot of teams registered this year so they may not let them play, but it is an all-girls team.

Team Three, if allowed to play, will be made up of Ariel Buehler, Amie Guo, Nithya Paranthaman and Minh Tran.

Baksa said this is the first all-girl team FHS has entered in the competition.

The pressure is on for the teams because although each winning team will receive a trophy, only the first-place team will go the National Bowl.

“And it has to be the same students. You can’t swap them out,” Baksa said.

Win or lose, the students will not have much time to celebrate or rest as the next Saturday, Feb. 28, is the Science Olympiad held at Tennessee Wesleyan College in Athens, and many of the students on the science bowl teams also are registered for the Science Olympiad.

Last year FHS won first-place in the Olympiad.

If FHS wins in Athens the students will move on to the state competition in April.


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