‘It’s Academic’ Fights for Spot in Semifinals

by Danielle Tobb ‘17

Sherwood’s “It’s Academic” team was thoroughly prepared when they stepped on the stage at NBC4 Studios for their competition against Northwest and Fairfax County’s Centreville on October 15.

Social studies teacher and co-sponsor of “It’s Academic” Scott Allen explained that the team played the game with a calculated strategy: build up a lead in the beginning in order to put pressure on their competitors; that way, in the last round, when the other teams are trying to catch up, they will have to move a lot faster to buzz in to beat Sherwood. And that is just what happened—Centreville hit their buzzer before the host could finish asking the last question and subsequently got the question wrong, enabling Sherwood to win by a narrow five points.

“The competition went by really quickly and when it ended, it still took a few more seconds to realize that we had won, but it was great to know that 11 years of school and two years of Wednesday after-school practices had paid off,” said junior team mem- ber Marisa Le.

Moving forward, the team has their work cut out for them as they prepare to go head-to-head with Blake and Fairfax County’s Oakton during the February 18 playoffs. Ever since their win in October, they have met every Wednesday after school from 2:30 to 4 p.m. to practice. Members of Sherwood’s “It’s Academic” club engage in simulated games, and use Quizlet to study when they are not at meetings. Additionally, every participant keeps a notebook of questions he or she gets wrong.

“The more practice they get the better because the same types of questions come up again and again,” said Allen.

Once second semester start- ed, the team amped up its practices by meeting at lunch to review as much as possible. Senior Jonathan Chang, Le, and sophomore Greg Lin will be the three members that represent Sherwood at the upcoming competition. These students were chosen to work together based on their track record at practices, how well their personalities mesh, and in which

subject each performs well in. Regarding the outcome of the playoffs, Le thinks they “denitely stand a chance. My teammates and I have put lots of time into practicing and improving, so I feel very con dent about how the competition will go.”
As the co-sponsor of “It’s Academic” for eight years, Allen has seen the team go through successes and setbacks.

“I am always happy if our team gets the bonus question right, but I’ll be proud of them no matter what because they’re already winners in my mind,” said Allen.

Be sure to tune in to NBC4 on Saturday, April 29 at 10:30 a.m. to root for the Warriors as they battle it out for a coveted spot in the semi nals competition.