One Ballot Explained

I didn’t have quite the same top 10 as the website, but here’s a quick rundown of my ballot and why I made it the way I did. Feel free to post your own top 10 in the comments section of this article.

1. Calvary FL
If ever there was a year to avoid my #1 team at AACS is the #1 team overall, this is the year. But Calvary didn’t have their best team together until AACS. And while Faith was very impressive in their win at SCQANIT, I’m skeptical that they would have been able to win AACS. Their best quizzer, Kelton Balka, was an 8th grader, who by rule is ineligible for AACS. So, had the same ministry been at AACS without Kelton, they do not win. I’m not sure that should count against them, but with so little separating these two teams at the top of the ballot, I, by the slightest of margins give Calvary the first place vote.

2. Faith SC
I came close to giving them the #1 vote, and maybe I should have. But since many teams will send split squads to SCQANIT and others keep middle schoolers off these teams altogether, I put them at #2 for winning the tournament with the best field, but not quite the most prestige.

3. Old Paths PA
Impressive all year, they placed #2 at SCQANIT and #3 at AACS. They also have a new coach, two new quizzers, and an entirely new scheme. If this a harbinger of things to come, we should see Old Paths continue with an excellent team.

4. Hillsdale FL
It is tough when you have no experience and end in the top five against perennial powerhouses. With nearly everyone coming back, they may be the second best team next year. The problem is that the other team ahead of them is in the same state and that makes it difficult to even make it to AACS (much less win it).

5. Heritage Mission NY
If you eliminate SCQANIT from the field, this team is definitely challenging for #1. And I suppose everyone has a bad day. But when you send two teams and neither finishes in the top 9, ranking you above #5 seems like a stretch. They did redeem themselves at AACS and prior to SCQANIT, they had a very impressive year. They won Athens, got the top two seeds at Colorado (and had two teams finish in the top 5), they won or got second in just about every tournament. But then again, SCQANIT was bad. And they probably should have beaten Calvary in the two-team quizzes at AACS.

6. Pleasant View KY
I really feel bad ranking this team this low. You see before the final week, I think they had a chance to be #1. And I think the only reason they may have not done better is weariness. And while I was willing to give them
a pass for SCQANIT, they got 5th at AACS and two teams not there need to be ranked higher.

7. Mukwonogo WI
Fortunately, this team does not have to deal with Falls Baptist at state. But, if they did, I imagine it would be a tremendous battle. Falls Baptist is not an AACS member at this time, but Wisconsin has two quiz programs that
may be the best 1-2 in the country with only Florida and South Carolina in the discussion with them.

8. Woodside
This team lets you know how truly unique this year’s balloting is. There is no way coming into the final week, I thought Woodside was on the radar. But they were tremendous at SCQANIT and then pretty good at AACS. They were
led by a quizzer who was in her first year, and probably has the chance to be a sophomore sensation.

9. Calvary SC
Tyler Zeimer is tremendous. The rest of the team is great when quizzing with him. They seem to lack a little bit when he is not quizzing, but when they are all together, this team can beat anyone. I feel like this is a team who had enough upside to beat some good teams and just had a couple of factors go against them, though they did get to quiz with a home church advantage.

10. Park Avenue NE
This team is sneaky good. For years, they have been great against great teams and seem to struggle with lesser teams. If they ever could focus as well early in tournaments as they do late, I would really think they had top
potential. Most years the 10th place team is decided by comparing resumes against mid level competition, but this team beat at least three or 4 of the teams ahead of them in several quizzes. So, this was an easy selection for
a team with the potential to do really well.

Comments 5

  1. What do you mean by “But Calvary didn’t have their best team together
    until AACS.” I thought that they were missing Paige at Nationals, not Scqanit.

  2. My top five:

    1. Faith (SC): solid all year and never really faltered. The fact is, this team had Kelton in the tournaments that they attended. Just because he cannot attend nationals doesn’t mean that they are not the best team in the nation. Maybe they would not have beat Calvary Fl had they quizzed at AACS without Kelton, but they didn’t. And Faith dominated at Scqanit.

    2. Heritage (NY) they won Athens. They got second at AACS to an inferior team. They got two top five teams in CI. They TOTALLY did not show up at Scqanit (figuratively). Why do they get the number two spot over FL? Cause they were at least on the map throughout the year and finished strong. A few strategical moves away from being concensus #1.

    3.Calvary (FL): This team quizzed the smartest of any team at AACS. I do not think that they were better than NY, but they were smarter than NY, which will often compensate for superiorority in BQ. But, they were completely not a factor the rest of the year, completely surprising most that they made it to Nationals. Yet they prevailed there. Without that win, i seriously doubt there existence in ANYBODY’S top 7.

    4. Pleasant View (KY): How can I possibly put this team over Old Paths? PA got second at Scqanit and third at Nationals, right? Correct. I’ll explain that one next. KY got 1st at CI, MI, Midseason, and Blue ridge Invitational. Minor tourny’s and one major. If their bus (and a van after that) didn’t break down Sunday on the way, we may have been singing their praises again this year. (ha) And if frogs had wings, they wouldn’t slap their hiney on the ground everytime they jumped either. However, they were one of four teams to win a major this year, and gave every team above them (and Old Paths once or twice too) a middle or a low at Scqanit or AACS. And losing Sunday night’s sleep was not made up after quizzing most of the day at Scqanit and getting seven hours of sleep Monday night.

    5, Old Paths (PA): They placed high in tournaments all year but they never won major tournament or a minor tournament that KY attended. They placed higher at Scqanit and AACS than KY, but they didnt have only two hours of sleep on Sunday night either. Anyway, I gotta get outta here. Give the rest of the top ten later.

  3. Wellsbo,
    Your rankings would be accurate if you were taking the whole year into consideration. But I know our team was way more prepared for these last two quizzes than any other. We were almost a different team. And I know others were too. So the way I see it, these rankings should reflect the finished product, the teams as they were at the end of the year. So I don’t see KY over us. And I know we both are biased a little. I don’t know about NY, I think it’s either us or them at 3-4, Calvary 2, and Faith 1.
    Oh, and by the way, once our team had less the 2 hours of sleep and we went and took 2nd. It’s a factor, but I don’t think it would make that big a difference.

  4. Ya. Maybe two hours of sleep didn’t affect them?? It woulda me. But oh well. They were freshmen except for Autumn and the coaches said it drained them so I just thought that should be a factor.
    As far as Calvary goes, I think Matt is pointing out that they didn’t have Kelsey at Athens, no David Tyrell at CI. I think it might be better to say that AACS fit Calvary’s style of quizzing better, considering that DT could only quiz out with five at Scqanit.

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