Kingston quiz bowl team optimistic about future
by Jon Dohrer
Kingston Public Schools
KINGSTON — Prospects for the future are high for the Kingston varsity quiz bowl team after its best conference finish in recent memory.
Second-year sponsor Tammy Russell said several key team members are graduating, but she is optimistic that new additions to the squad will be able to contribute right away.
"We'll miss the seniors, but we've got some pretty good ones coming up,' Russell said. "We'll add Jimbo Droddy, and Ms. (Kelly) Shipley is sending us some good players from the junior high team. We should be pretty good."
Kingston finished third in the Lake Country Conference behind Plainview and Lone Grove. Several of the Redskins' four losses losses came by narrow margins, and they will look to build on this year's successes next season.
Graduating are seniors Robbie Bunger, Ciera Cox, Destiny Hughes, Aaron King, Jessica Kretzchmar, Calli Rogers and Daniel Shipp. All were solid contributors, and Shipp was among the team's highest scorers. Back for next year will be consistent performers Ben Whipkey and Nathan Cook, as well as several others expected to make an impact.
In addition to the returning players, there is the possibility that new players may join the roster. That was the case this year, with Hughes, King and Shipp among team members who either hadn't played before or hadn't played in a while. All three were integral to the squad's success.
The academic team now turns its attention to interscholastic meets, in hopes of repeating or exceeding last year's outstanding results. The Redskins qualified 21 scholars for the prestigious Tournament of Champions. Ben Whipkey is the returning state champion in biology, and teammate Gabrielle Burks placed third in art.
Russell said enthusiasm is building after last year's achievements.
"There has been a huge show of interest this year — not just from the academic team, but the student body as a whole," Russell said. "It's kind of caught on, and kids are wanting to compete."
The Redskins will participate in six meets this season, in addition to the Tournament of Champions.