NYC 2006 Senior Division

2006 is the fourth year in a row that I have attended the NYC. The first year, I quizzed on a team called the FQA Loaves, with TMA quizzers Jordan Bond and Stephen Bell, and also Paul Austin. That year, we made it into the finals (held in the other gym, mind you), and beat Athens 1 twice in a row to claim the tournament. The second, I quizzed under the “Southeast Coalition,” and while I made it into the top 10 highest quizzers category, my team only managed to place 10th. The third, I went up with my new church team, and while we did not do too well, I still consider it a great learning experience for them. This year, I came up with UCF team members Heather and Nathan for the sole purpose of observing, cheering, and then giving you (that’s right, you, the faithful reader) an inside scoop as to the happenings of BOTH tournaments happening in Athens that day. Of course, when Mr. Bamford needed me to do some quizmastering in the round robin for the Junior division, I couldn’t say “no”; quizmastering at a major tournament has always been something I’ve wanted to do. However, I was glad it was only temporary; I spent the afternoon and evening bouncing around from quiz to quiz, building to building, in order to better serve you. Without further delay, the NYC 2006 Senior division tournament:

But first, a disclaimer (delay): I love doing this kind of stuff, “reporting” or whatever you want to call it, but when trying to keep tabs on two tournaments at the same time in different buildings, I get confused. Oh sure, I try to write it all down, but sometimes I don’t and I forget things. If you find an error in this article, please e-mail me at and I will try to change it. Please do not take my errors personally, just take deep breaths and then calmly open your e-mail and compose a friendly correction letter. It would be appreciated.

Also, check out my review of the junior high tournament.

The Teams and the Tournament

Before I start reviewing the teams at the NYC this year, I need to tell you all this (delay). There were a lot (31!) teams in the Senior division this year, and more than half that in the Junior division. I am only a mere man, however; writing these articles would not be possible without the help of Heather and Nathan. Even with them, though, we were unable to observe any one team outside the top ten teams for any significant amount of time. Having said that, I will only remark on the teams that did make it to the final rounds of quizzing (top ten), and maybe some other honorable mentions.

The Top Ten

Open Door:
3rd seed from the round robin. Took a loss early in the tournament on the last question against Woodside and Old Paths. But you have got to love this team for doing so well (of course we knew they would; they’re from Florida). Seeing them quiz almost monthly at FQA competitions, I knew that they could be one of the best teams at Athens that day. But the thing I remember most about them is when Grace walked up to receive her award (third highest quizzer!), the entire audience stood and gave her a standing ovation. They finally got their second loss on the last question again, as Grace jumps and guessed wrong on a 50-50 question (who walked on the water, in Matthew 14). Great job to Grace and the rest of their team for doing so well!

Heritage 2:
It isn’t too often that two teams from the same ministry both do well in a large tournament like this (FBC-CF is the notable exception), but Heritage surprised us again and made it to the top ten, without a loss for the majority of the tournament. Eventually though, they had to face their other team, but congrats to such a strong second team!

Once again, FBC-CF brought multiple teams to this event; this year they had three Senior level teams. Last year, we saw the FBC-CF 2 team overachieve and make 4th place; this year they hoped to match their progress. Even though they were eliminated at 7th place, they had two quizzers in the top 25 at the end of the day.

Always a strong contender, Faith Baptist Church is constantly expected to do well, at least at this tournament. However, I saw Faith get eliminated on the final couple questions, and I knew that the time of Faith dominating this tournament has finally come and gone. They placed 7th, which is certainly a step back from previous years, but considering how the competition level has escalated over the past couple years, getting this far is an accomplishment, to say the least.

Calvary FL:
The team that beat FBC-CF in December came to the NYC for the first time, and placing 5th is quite an accomplishment for this new team. While they argue that they should have gone on further in the tournament, I think they quizzed just fine, and that they should really be proud of getting this far in a major tournament like this one.

Heritage 1:
Tied with Calvary for 5th place, but it’s also worth mentioning that they were one of the final four teams that did not have a loss in the winner’s bracket. They received their first loss on the last question against Old Paths, and again their second loss in the last quiz before the finals. Heritage was led by a young lady named Faith, who stepped up to take the place of Heather from last year, and the rest of the team obviously picked it up from when I last saw them at the Midseason. It was no surprise that they did so well this year.

The Final Four

Old Paths – no losses
PVKY – one loss
FBC-CF – no losses
Valley – one loss

Highest seed in the tournament. No losses. Only one middle win, and only by ten points going into The Final Four. Abby, up until the end, quizzed superbly, and was the highest quizzer at the tournament. Her Number 2, Praiselynn, quizzed very similarly to Abby and made it possible for them to high-win almost every quiz they were in. Coaches were none other than Breanna and Annabelle from last year’s championship team. All signs pointed to FBC-CF in the finals. And then, nothing. FBC-CF lost the first two quizzes in the gym. Maybe they burned out, but I’m thinking it’s more than just a lack of endurance. They quizzed terribly.

Now, I have always been an FBC-CF fan, and I still am. But I failed to see why they could not turn it around in the final questions like they are always so fond of doing. I believe they beat themselves. They lost morale, made a lot of mistakes, and failed to shake it off. That is not the FBC-CF team that won 22 months worth of FQA competitions, that I have quizzed against and loss to half a dozen times, that took the AACS championship and won the NYC last year. They are better than this, and not to take from the three teams that placed better than them (as I believe all three of them deserved it), but they could have won. Let us hope they can make a turnaround for the next tournament.

Having said that, save their last two quizzes, they were dominating. They quizzed smart, used errors, and in the final rounds of the Winners bracket, they took off, leaving teams like Old Paths and PVKY to struggle for the middle. It was very surprising to see them take fourth in a tournament that had in the palm of their hand.

Old Paths:
Old Paths returned and survived in the tournament even with the loss of Matt and Tim. Grace really stepped up to the plate and as they entered The Final Four with no losses to their name, it looked like it may be a showdown with them against FBC-CF much like last year. However, with FBC-CF eliminated, PVKY and Valley teamed up and took out Old Paths almost effortlessly. Some could say they burned out after a phenomenal day, and I would have to agree with that. You see, Old Paths DID give PVKY a loss earlier in the tournament, and they got several high wins against Valley throughout the day. I think that they would have won if the tournament had not gone so late, but in this tournament, endurance is a major factor. They were eliminated in about the same way FBC-CF was: too many errors, but also because a lack of endurance.

Final two

PVKY and Valley. Before the tournament, a lot of people had picked PVKY to win not only this tournament, but possibly AACS as well. People speculated that it could be PVKY and FBC-CF, or PVKY and Old Paths, or PVKY and Heritage, but I don’t think anybody thought the NYC 2006 Finals would be PVKY vs Valley. Our “all-knowing” writers on the website say things like “Never pick Western teams” or “Teams that have long travels usually lose.” But, going into the final three, I found myself rooting for Valley to win. They were the underdog, as they got their first loss late afternoon. They were from California, as they live there. And yet they showed more endurance and willpower than both Old Paths and FBC-CF. They were remarkable. The girls of Valley knew the scripture, and their talent was thickly spread across the entire team. They didn’t just middle win their way to the top either. They got high wins, against teams like FBC-CF and PVKY. This is by far the best I have seen of Valley, and they were running on all cylinders.

On the other hand, we have PVKY, who implemented the Number One/Number Two concept flawlessly. Aaron clearly led the team to the Finals, and Autumn was a major supporter, to say the least. Without either of those two quizzers, PVKY would not have likely made the finals, let alone The Final Four. Having already seen PVKY earlier this year (beating Autumn’s team and losing to Aaron’s team at the Midseason), I highly suspected that PVKY would walk away champions. As 2nd seed in the round robin, but getting their first loss against Old Paths and FBC-CF in the final quiz of the Winners bracket, PVKY had no room for error.

The final quiz started. Valley got an early lead 80-40, and then PVKY made a complete turnaround and took off. After 15 questions the score was 160 PVKY 130 Valley. Valley jumps and answers. An error here would send Valley packing, as PVKY would get the rebound and Valley would have to answer the next four correct just to tie with PVKY. The quizmaster rules it incorrect, but then Valley makes a challenge and it’s accepted. Valley then proceeds to get two more questions to make the score 190 Valley 160 PVKY. Aaron quizzes out on question 19, making the final question of the final quiz the determinant of the outcome. The final question is asked, and then Autumn, fulfilling her role as one of the best Number Twos ever, answers correctly for the win.

So there you have it, folks. PVKY did come out on top, Valley got an amazing second place, and I pat myself on the back for writing two articles at once. Now, before I finish, let’s go over some of the teams that Lindsay and Zyhaus said were major contenders.

Athens, Parsippany, Woodside:
Some of’s favorites really didn’t step it up for this tournament. Woodside I can understand: two teams from far away, and both teams just missed the top 10. Both Athens and Parsippany need to make changes to their quizzing style if they want to do well this year. I know they can: Athens did win AACS 2003, and Parsippany has usually been hard to beat in the past. Let’s hope they can turn it around for the future.

Give a high-five to Mr. Douglas, Mr. West, and especially Mr. Bamford for taking the time to organize this tournament. The event went off perfectly (save for a basketball breaking a trophy, whoops), and Mr. Bamford really knows how to run a tournament. Congrats to all officials, coaches, and quizzers for making NYC 2006 a success!!!!!


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