This year’s incarnation of Mellon Bowl at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh featured some major storylines for the unfolding season. Though the event was, according to our sources, unfortunately marred by significant tournament delays which did affect the outcome of the event, this did not stop the students from kicking off the first of the year’s Pittsburgh events in style.
Alagar Homeschool won the event. Though a tie between the Homeschoolers and State College A stood at the end of the day, the delays at the event led the latter team to decide not to opt for a final. The Alagars put on a fine showing to defend their place as King of the Hill in Western PA, defeating all the other Pennsylvania teams they faced quite handily. They did take a loss to Boardman High out of the Youngstown, Ohio area. Rajan and Jaya both put up the strong numbers we have come to expect from them, and both exceeded 20 powers on the day. As for runners-up State College, they showed that despite the rash of graduations on the team that finished in the top-5 last year, they are not going away anytime soon. All of their four players put up over 18 points a game, and they were slightly undermanned. State College has asserted themselves as a team which might work its way back into the rankings.
Allderdice A took third, only losing to Alagar and SC and slicing their way to 21+points per bonus and impressive stats. Like State College but even more so, this team is amazingly balanced. Led by Jakobi at 65 ppg, their other 4 players all exceeded 25 points per game. Allderdice reminds one very much of last year’s state champion Winchester Thurston team, and they look to have the parts for a very serious run this season. Speaking of Thurston, the underclassmen that replaced the seniors from last year also made it to the playoffs. Their stats were not as strong as last year’s but this is once again a durable program who continues to pump out enough strong players to be a year-in year-out regional power in Pittsburgh. George Washington from West Virginia and State College B also made the playoffs.
In the consolation zone, teams from circuit regular schools Shady Side, Westmont Hilltop, Indiana, South Side, and Yough got in action, and impressed in a few wins each. Will Davis of Shady Side was the event’s highest scoring Pennsylvanian, with 91 ppg. Chartiers Valley made a return to Mellon Bowl after an absence from the circuit, and Northwest PA Collegiate Academy from Erie, who first played pyramidal late last year, also showed up and finished a respectable 6-5 and got over half their bonus questions. These teams might have some potential in time.
Overall, though there were logistical issues, Mellon Bowl allowed many Western Pennsylvania students the chance to kick off their season with quality quizbowl. The conversation will continue for the Pittsburgh circuit at UPitt next month.