Ocean Bowl in Oregon

The Ocean Bowl team is exposed to valuable learning experiences on their trip to compete in Oregon

Senior Hannah Roediger was very excited to dissect the baby seal. She was one of the first students volunteering to get involved in the necropsy, beginning the process by taking some external measurements. Seniors Kelly Banach and Jenna McHale later jumped in as well with a group of other high schoolers from around the country, trying to determine what had killed the marine animal. The results were inconclusive.

In addition to the baby harbor seal necropsy, the Ocean Bowl team toured some labs while in Oregon for the National Ocean Bowl competition and explored the diversity of worms and shellfish and other creatures in a mudflat using “slurp sticks.”

It’s not every year that students on the Ocean Bowl team are exposed to these opportunities. Only twice has the team won the regional Quahog Bowl to proceed on to the national competition: once in 2012, and this year.

“Our expectations were to do well at regionals,” senior Jenna McHale said. “I didn’t expect to make it to nationals.”

In order to win the regional Quahog Bowl, the team had to score the most points out of sixteen teams through several rounds of multiple choice buzzer questions and Team Challenge Questions, in which the whole team can work together on free-response questions.

After winning the regional competition, the team went on to compete against 25 teams in Oregon.

“I had hoped to get a little bit further,” adviser David Bednarz said. “Nerves and timidness held us back.”

“I think we were all a little disappointed,” senior Sam Beacham said. “We had studied so much and we actually knew a majority of the answers, but we got so stressed out that we didn’t get to show off that knowledge.”

Even though they didn’t end up placing in the national competition, all the Wednesdays studying after school and practice buzzer questions and textbook rotations still led to some incredible learning experiences.

“Ocean Bowl has taught me a lot of things,” Beacham said, “but I think the biggest takeaway I’ve gotten is how important it is to be passionate about what you do.”

Alex Houdeshell, Staff Writer

Senior Alex Houdeshell is the Editor-in-Chief of the 2016-2017 Horizons yearbook. In addition to running cross country, indoor track, and track and field, she is the President of Operation Smile. In her spare time, she enjoys playing hackey sack or ultimate frisbee, reading Time magazine, and making a lot of milkshakes.

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