Published: March 11, 2016
The Academic Quiz team won the Greater Miami Conference for the second time and scored 11 points towards Mason receiving the 2015 All-Sports trophy for the eighth year since Mason joined the GMC in 2007.
According to third year captain and senior George Valcarcel, the Academic Team plays each team in the GMC twice through conference play. They have reached a point of annual success by the combined record over the last two years being 35-1, and undefeated this season. In 2012, the Academic Team went 11-7, and in 2013 their record was 12-6. With the record in 2014 being 17-1 and this year 18-0, the Academic Team has shown major improvement.
With Princeton winning 31-30 to Mason last year and being the only team that Academic Team lost to in 2013, Valcarcel said that the team made sure they had a comeback this season.
“The final was Princeton and it was important for us because we went in with the mindset that we can’t take them for granted,” Valcarcel said. “We know that last year they were the one team that was able to beat us. We went in fully knowing that we were going to play our best game and minimize our mistakes. Sure enough, we crushed them.”
Valcarcel said that in addition to Princeton, Lakota West gave them some trouble over the years but they stuck it out to contribute to their flawless record.
“Lakota West has always been a strong rival in the GMC, and when our undefeated season was on the line, we were going down to the last couple questions,” Valcarcel said. “It really put the pressure on us and maybe in past seasons we would have cracked under the pressure. But by this season, due to our experience and maturity with the competition, we were able to hold our composure and calmly win the match.”
According to Ohio Academic Challenge Head Greg Bossick, the Comets should look to winning more rigorous competitions, and hope for a national title on the future.
“It’s definitely an accomplishment to win your league twice,” Bossick said. “But it should be just a starting point. It should be just a launching pad to your final destination.”
By winning the GMC, the Academic Team is advancing to regionals on April 16, said Valcarcel.
“We are at a point where we want to continue the tradition of success that we have started the last couple years,” Valcarcel said. “We would like a GMC trophy here in Mason from every year going on because the GMC is where everything starts.”