Occidental College Team Set to Compete in National Quiz Tournament April 6-7
A trio of Occidental College students will match wits with peers from 23 colleges and universities during the fifth-annual National Academic Quiz Tournament scheduled for April 6-7 at Washington University in St. Louis.
It will be the college’s first appearance in the national competition.
Oxy team members include freshman Josh Ludtke of Elwood, Ill., an undeclared major and graduate of Providence Catholic High School in New Lenox, Ill.; sophomore Paul Seeley of Canyon Country, Calif., also undeclared and a graduate of Canyon High School; and senior Wesley Mathews of Birmingham, Ala., a geology major and graduate of The Altamont School. The Occidental quiz bowl team qualified for the Division II national tournament after placing among the top five contenders during west sectionals held in February at USC.
Teams are placed in Division I or Division II based on tournament experience. Only teams that have competed at the national level can play in Division I. Occidental will be competing against institutions that include Yale, Princeton and New York universities.
“We’re going head to head with some pretty exclusive competition,” Mathews said, adding that the Occidental team has been studying since September. “We’re at the peaks of our development and we should be proud of ourselves. I consider the fact that we’re going to nationals the chief award in and of itself.”
Tournament competitors will face an array of questions covering history, literature, the sciences, philosophy, music and the arts. Players must hit a buzzer to answer questions during a competition that will be divided into two equal halves lasting at least nine minutes each. Play ends if competitors answer the 28 “tossup” and bonus questions before time lapses.
The tournament is put on by National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LLC, which also sponsors competitions at the high school level.