Independence Day Spectaular Results

After missing the last couple Independence Day Spectaculars, I was very excited to be there. There were 26 teams (actually only 24, but the schedule had 26) and usually that means that you have no chance of seeing all the good teams in the round robin, but with 13 rounds, I could!! Early on, I was watching as many teams as I could. There were some comments I heard from teams, which I will list and then evaluate.

First, Matt West was way weaker than he was last year. Second, David Poston’s accent is so tough to understand when he quizmasters. Third, the Carbonells were still the best team in the tournament. Fourth, everyone should team up to beat the Carbonells. Fifth, the Tyrrells were a dynamite family. Sixth, Tiffany Jordan looked great for having just given birth and the pictures of Emilee were so cute. Seventh, Paul West looked fantastic for being 4 days removed from heart surgery. Eighth, there was a really smart AP guy running the computers (and the girl helping him was pretty cute). Ninth, this whole points thing is crazy. Tenth, the quizmasters don’t take the necessary timeouts. Eleventh, this is the most fun Bible Quiz event ever.

Now, let me evaluate them. (#1)Matt West quizzed out with no errors in the 4th round when I saw him. Although, his teammate Grace quizzed out before him (with 2 errors, though) and he didn’t get out until question 15. He was OK, and since I wasn’t there last year, I can’t say for sure. He himself said, however, that he was unprepared and he fell from first to tenth individually. Not sure why, but the scuttlebutt appears to be a fact. (#3)The Carbonells were the best, and (#4) I am not sure if it would be fun or fair for them for everyone to team up on the Carbonells. Although, that may be the only way to beat them. They may be beat in a singular quiz, but because they are both solid and not very error prone, it seems unlikely that they could lose two quizzes in a nine-quiz span, where they quiz no more than six times.

(#6)Tiffany looked great, as did Paul West(#7). Two definite facts. (#2)David Poston was not the quizmaster he has been at other events, but he, West, and Jordan were part of an incredible QuizMastering team. Noone that I saw was terrible, and they all were decisive and fun. Their only weakness seemed to be (#10) that they never took timeout to give scores. With points being so important, that would have helped the teams. However, (#9) the points thing was really good, as the entire day saw quizzing throughout the quiz. I’m not opposed to a good team being beat with an error by another team (in fact I really like it, as I will discuss later), but I am glad that none of the bottom teams had to deal with an experienced team having a bad quiz trumping their accomplishment with strategy that seems unfair to newbies.

(#8)I have no idea how skilled the AP guy was, but the program certainly seemed complicated to me, though I have always preferred Quatro Pro, since Lotus became tough to find, so Excel is always greek to me. The girl with him was really cute, though. (#5)She and the entire Tyrrell family were highlights to me. I must admit that since the Austin family quizzed in the FQA, I have never been as excited to see a team work together. And these teams, unlike the Austin family, were incredibly outgoing and all good quizzers. They were so nice and fun from top to bottom. They were part of the equation that made this (#11) one of the most fun quiz events ever.

Now, hopefully I will get together some notes on it, but I didn’t really watch much of the Consolation event. Here were the 12 final teams

Fervent Heat, better known as the Carbonells, scored 2050 points. They were the class of the event. Lady And The Tramp scored 1820 and was the best of the Tyrrell teams. The Assistant Director Coalition (Alex D’Amico and Brant Callaway) scored 1710 and of the top 5-6 teams were the most inconsistent. They could quiz great and beat everyone or they could quiz poorly and lose to everyone. The Marvelous Marriage (Jesse and Heather) scored 1700 and they looked about the same as they have for every event for two years. Double Entendre scored 1620 and was the second best of the Tyrrell teams. I thought these were clearly the top 5 teams at this point, and were clearly my prediction to make the final five. However there were seven teams fighting to take one of their spots.

Those teams were led by The Spineapples who scored 1530 and with Praise and Breanna had two who had been champions. The Yankee Doodle Dandies scored 1410 and shocked me, as I thought they were the worst of the Tyrrell teams (of course that doesn’t mean a lot, as all of their teams were very good) and also thought they would barely miss the top 12. The Dynamic Duo scored 1310 and I felt if they got to the top 5, they would be dangerous as Kelsey could lead them to middle wins.

The Minutemen who scored 1260, “L” SQAURED who scored 1070, and The Past And The Present who scored 1050 seemed like they had no chance. Amazing Grace, who scored 1250, had the names to compete, but they barely squeeked in and I thought they had no chance.

The seven rounds of 12 teams proved that the top 5 were clearly among the best. But, the group had grown from 5 to 7. The Spineapples joined the group, as did Amazing Grace. Matt West was clearly better in the afternoon and actually did well. Their team came within 20 points of the 5th highest scoring team and 100 ahead of the team immediately behind them. While Amazing Grace was close, they were out, but the Spineapples actually outscored Lady and the Tramp by 10 points. There was some discussion among the judges and overhearing them, I think it came down to the fact that Lady and the Tramp had a better record and 300 (actually 290) more points in the morning rounds. It was relatively controversial, but ultimately, I liked the choice.

The top five then had a standard double elimination tournament. Paul West was the quizmaster. I would have rather seen David Douglas (or even the recently eliminated Matt West, as his knowledge of the rules is second to none and his knowledge of the passage was better than those who only quizmastered). Paul does a good job, but he (and almost everyone, really) has a little more slippage than the other two. With team’s getting up early late in quizzes to make errors, the importance of a word could mean the difference between not enough and enough, so I think that may help.

On a rant, I seem to disagree with everyone on this issue, but I LIKE the fact that teams can win out on errors. While I do agree the other team should at least have a flailing chance, it is the same strategy as taking a knee in football, stalling in basketball, or the occassional intentional walk in baseball. I think every competitive event has a time where occassionally a strategy that involves doing something that most of the event would be silly actually helps. So when there is a time to error at the Independence Day Spectacular, I think it is great! If you make it to the top 5, you are really good, and you need to man up and just not fall behind. Ok, end of rant.

The Coalition handed a loss to Fervent Heat (Carbonells) by making such an error. Controversy ensued, but the fact is that it happened. Of course, ice out the Carbonells at your own risk, and the Carbonells eliminated the Coalition on the same situation. Shortly thereafter the two Tyrrell teams fell aside. Now, the same two teams as last year met in the championship, except the opposite team had a loss. But, what appeared to be a chapter three weakness for the Marvelous Marriage turned out to be their undoing in both quizzes. The final questions in both quizzes came from there. While the one who became known to us as Machine Gun quibbled, I kind of liked the two team rules. I hear they have changed them every year, so there is no reason to go into much detail anyway.

A great day, a great event, the same result. Please someone (Keenans, Wells, anyone else) try to beat the Carbonells. While this event is great, it seems less great when the same team wins every year!!

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