Virtual meets brings on a new vibe

Written by Natalie Drouhard, website editor-in-chief

This week was the first Scholars Bowl meet, which was held virtually by Trinity Academy. Due to Covid, some meets will take place at Conway Springs High School through a computer virtual system but hosted by other teams. These virtual changes allow for competition to take place even when in-person competition cannot be held. So far there are only three in-person meets scheduled, one of them being hosted at Conway.

“The meet started out really rocky and slow,” senior Sadie Schmanke said. “The technology getting figured out took an extra hour and then around 30 minutes between the separate rounds. After a while, everyone got it figured out, and we all started having fun.” 

Although virtual is a new change, many teams didn’t seem to have a hard shift to using the different technology, and there weren’t any issues with buzzing in and not getting credit for it. Even with the heads up of a virtual meet, in practice, nothing had changed. The members of the Scholars Bowl team were thrown into the virtual meet with no prior knowledge on how the meet would go.

“We used Zoom Breakout rooms. Every new round a link would be sent out and the teams and moderators would all join,” senior Sydney Boese said. “We were too far away from the screen to see, but the other team, moderator, and the score were up on the screen during the meet.” 

The first varsity meet held many close rounds but no wins. Kingman, which is regularly the team’s hardest competition, ended up being the largest score divide. For new members, the switch from middle school to high school went smoothly despite the virtual meet.

“I had competed in middle school before, and so far the high school is really similar, just with much harder questions,” freshman Amelia Schmanke said. “The virtual wasn’t really that different from in person, and other teams struggled more than we did with it. I still prefer it in person.”

During the first virtual meet for Scholars Bowl, seniors Lucy Boyles and Sadie Schmanke and freshman Riley Johnson use their phones to answer questions. “I don’t have a phone so Mrs. Martin let me use hers. It was weird at first and other teams struggled, but then it was fun,” Schmanke said.
(Photo by Kristy Martin)