August I-85

By Ron Zyhaus

Four teams met last Saturday in what is believed to be the first competition ever to match up middle school, high school, and college teams. They met at Harmony Baptist Church in Monroe, GA to decide who would be the first I-85 champion.

Here’s the rundown on the teams.

Athens Middle School:
Athens brought a young (even for middle school) team to I-85’s first event. Although they were sometimes outclassed by older, more experienced quizzers, they didn’t just crash and burn. They fell just short of beating their high school team a couple of times, but the highlight of the day came against college powerhouse Georgia Tech. Tech romped into the sixth quiz of the day undefeated and looking to dominate. According to my fellow BibleQuizzer.neter and Georgia Tech quizzer, Brant Callaway, “we were talking about ways we could get to 400 [points].” Quickly, they gave up that goal. With an early backwards quiz out by Bre Rich and a rule modification that changed a forward quiz out from 6 to 4, GT was quickly swept away much in part to outstanding by Troy (that’s all he goes by—no last name—just Troy).

Athens High School:
Athens High School team in some ways surpassed my expectations and in some ways didn’t meet them at all. They were weakened by the absence of senior Freddy Dove. Taylor Gurley and Kyler Dennis show promise but weren’t spectacular either. Anthony Licata had a huge day though and finished as the second highest quizzer. They pushed through the morning rounds tied for second with a 3-3 record.

Georgia Tech:
After a second place finish last year at the college national championship, Georgia Tech showed some improvement in their second ever tournament. They are somewhat of a paradox though. Last year, if you remember, we had a couple of articles after NYC about “mercenary teams”—a team that has quizzers that aren’t a part of their ministry (i.e. go to a different church or school). Anyway, Brant was highly opposed to them then. But now he brings a whole team of mercenaries. To my knowledge, only he and possibly one other quizzer were actually from the Institute. And one of them, Bre Rich, was the star of the show. They pounded their way through the early rounds, with the exception of the humiliating defeat at the hand of kids who were 6, 7, or 8 years their junior, and ended with a 5-1 record.

Seminole Community College:
Although it was their first ever college quiz, SCC brought together an experienced group of old Master’s quizzers. Jesse Startup headlined the group, but he had a strong supporting cast including Heather Rigsby and current FQA quiz master Jordan Bond. They had some decent morning quizzes: lost twice to Tech, beat Athens MS twice, and split with Athens HS.

Playoff Results:
Athens HS, Georgia Tech, and SCC met in a three team double elimination tournament for the championship with David Poston and Matt West asking the questions. Georgia Tech seemed to have the edge in the first quiz. They won big with Athens HS getting the middle win easily over SCC.

Second quiz. Same three teams. Callaway quizzed out backwards early leaving GT in bad shape. Athens ran away with the high win and SCC middled.

The third quiz came and so did elimination to Seminole Community College. They lost to strong performances by Licata and Rich.

And then there were two. Twice Athens led late in quizzes behind more strong performances by Licata, but twice on the combined efforts of Callaway and Rich, Georgia Tech won quizzes on the last question giving Georgia Tech their first ever tournament victory.

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