Ithaca NY Brainbusters Wrap-Up

At the same time as Henderson this weekend, several  schools out of Northeast PA ventured to the Finger Lakes Region to try their hand at the same group of questions (IS-150). The tournament was won by the home team, with Ithaca High continuing to look like a potential National Title Contender. Let’s look at the highlights for our Keystone State squads.

Delaware Valley A continued to look like a state title contender, finishing 3rd with a 10-1 record. A browse of their statline shows some impressive things: an average margin of victory of 300 points is nice, and 22.19 points a bonus is elite. However, there’s a couple of red flags: a lower power rate than last time, and a kind of absurd 32 negs, which is almost three a game. It’s tough to say if that was a fluke or not, but that does leave Delaware Valley open to lose matches they shouldn’t. They’ve got as much knowledge and depth as anyone though, so they could well overcome this. One of the more interesting teams to watch statistically in PA this year.

Lakeland continued to establish themselves as a good new team to factor in to your picture of quizbowl in Pennsylvania. They finished 5th, had a few quality wins along the way, and hit the 300s in several matches. Wallenpaupack wins the most improved award, jumping over five points per bonus from last month. This is another new team getting firmly established and I think they’re going to be a really good squad in the near future. Moravian Academy and Mountain View also made the playoffs. Neither of these schools had an easy time, winning lots of pitchers duels, but wins are wins. Congratulations should be sent their way for going deep in as schools with little invitational experience. Lastly, we must mention Wyoming Area A and Berwick, who also competed. These teams are building up for the first time, and I expect good things soon. Northeastern Pennsylvania is perhaps the area of the state improving the fastest, both in numbers participating and in quality of play. We hope to see more tournaments out there in the near future!

-Ben Herman


  1. Thanks for the attention to the efforts of the Northeastern PA schools in upstate New York, Ben. Just wanted to mention a word of thanks to Tournament Director Scott Blish and Ithaca Coach Ben Kirk for running a well-organized event that allowed thirty-six teams from over twenty schools to participate.
    Though only a handful of teams put up bonus numbers that indicate they could be a quality team at nationals, having a tournament where many novice schools have a chance to feel successful is helpful in getting quiz bowl established in our region.


  2. I take full responsibility for my team’s negs, especially as they were mostly mine. I played super-aggressive in our morning matches, and I didn’t feel well as a whole. There’s no excuses, but negging is something I’m explicitly working on. Hopefully our future tournament results will reflect this.

    Also, I’m extremely glad with how Wallenpaupack and Lakeland have been doing. It’s great to see teams in my area expanding and actually taking quizbowl seriously.


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