Academic team qualifies for National Academic Quiz Tournament

The Mason academic team competes in a match against Princeton High School.

Ali Sami | The Chronicle

The Mason High School Academic team is heading to nationals for the first time in school history.

The Mason academic team has been coached by English teacher Thurman Allen since 2007. It is a “team jeopardy” style quiz bowl game where up to four members at a time compete and answer questions in ten different categories. Allen was on his high school academic team and said he attempts to coach up his players’ understanding in the categories they are less familiar with based on his experience.

“My responsibility is filling gaps in knowledge,” Allen said. “There are certain things that they may not know because they don’t have that experience.”

The team competes in the National Academic Quiz Tournament and the Ohio Academic Competition. You qualify for nationals if you finish in the top 15% of the NAQT tournament. (As of January 16) Mason is leading the Greater Miami Conference (GMC) with an 11-1 record.

Senior team captain Davin Siverston has been competing since he was a freshman and said that this year’s team chemistry is critical to their success.

“Team chemistry is really something important and something we thrive off of,” Siverston said. “It helps us because we can just bounce topics off of each other.”

Junior Hailey Hartman joined the team her sophomore year and is now a team captain. Hartman said reaching nationals for the first time is something this year’s team wants to make a norm for the future.

“It’s setting the precedent that we can do this again next year too,” Hartman said.

Hartman said that as a captain, she is pleased with the team’s success and is excited for their national competition.

“It makes me feel proud because I helped get them skills as a leader at this point,” Hartman said.

As the first Mason academic team to compete in a national tournament, Hartman said that she wants to leave a lasting legacy.

“This is something that is going to be remembered [in school history],” Hartman said.

Photo by Risha Chada