York’s Scholastic Bowl takes 1st place in their regional competition March 8, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Andrew Bendelow)
York’s Scholastic Bowl takes 1st place in their regional competition March 8, 2021.

Photo courtesy of Andrew Bendelow

York’s Scholastic Bowl team buzzes in on the success of a challenging season.

April 6, 2021

York’s Scholastic Bowl Team capped off their season on March 14 with a second place finish against the Red Devils in the Hinsdale Central Sectional. 

Along with their regional victory earlier this month, this sectional tournament marked the second time this year the York team was able to compete in the same room together.  The regular season was moved online due to COVID-19 so York’s team learned how to compete apart from one another. 

“Competing over Zoom really isn’t the same as competing in person,” senior team member Liz Yu said. “A good chunk of the fun in meets is going there, making small talk with the team and seeing everyone all together.” 

A typical Scholastic Bowl tournament sees two teams of five members each compete head-to-head to answer questions covering a variety of topics from math to Roman history. Each tournament is a test of each competitors’ knowledge and ability to think quickly under pressure. Though this year brought a few changes, like requiring competitors to “buzz” in over Zoom chat rather than with a handheld buzzer, the team was able to adapt quickly to the new challenges of the season. 

“The nice thing about SchoBowl is that it’s ‘COVID-compatible,’” senior captain Clare Cockman said. “We were able to move to online practices and matches fairly easily because our format isn’t like that of most other team sports, you can participate over Zoom and the whole team doesn’t have to be in the same room.” 

Thanks to the relaxed COVID-19 restrictions, this year’s postseason tournaments were allowed to compete in-person with approval from the Illinois High School Association, offering the team their first chance to compete face-to-face this year. 

“It was pretty exciting,” Scholastic Bowl coach and York English teacher Andrew Bendelow said. “We got Portillos, and everyone got to sit outside in the courtyard before matches. It was kind of a revelation to see some of our new players that we’ve literally never laid eyes on. And everyones getting along which I think bodes well for next year.”

As the Scholastic Bowl team looks to the future with hopes of continuing their winning streak, they have much to be satisfied with, finding success and victory in a challenging year. 

“Even though we’ve spent the entire season virtually and haven’t had many opportunities to really do much together as a team, it was nice to see everyone again and especially win together again,” senior team member Adrian Zhuang said. “I think we had a pretty solid team this year and we were able to do a lot together so I’m pretty proud of that.” 

Students interested in joining the Scholastic Bowl team for the 2021-22 season should contact Mr. Bendelow or Ms. Wall for more information. 


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