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Chillicothe High School wins 2015 South Central Ohio Regional Science Bowl

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio - Chillicothe High School captured the third annual U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) South Central Ohio Regional Science Bowl title on Friday, March 13, 2015, at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio.

Team members Dylan Crisp, Keegan Francis, Noah Wright-Piekarski, Matthew Wagner and Claire Schmitt defeated five teams in a single-elimination tournament that followed the morning pool play.  Their victory over Northwest in the final match sends them to the 25th Annual National Science Bowl®, scheduled for April 30-May 4 in Washington, D.C., where they will compete against regional winners from throughout the nation.

“When they lost their first match by only two points to an experienced team (Waverly), I realized they just needed to get into the flow of the competition,” said winning coach Joshua Queen.  “I think one of the things that really helps us is that we have a lot of (Advanced Placement) courses and a variety of math and science classes that really give us an advantage.”

Chillicothe won the event consisting of 32 teams from 18 southern Ohio high schools.  After finishing second in their morning pool play, the Cavaliers defeated Valley, Waverly and the Pike County Career Technical Center teams to advance to the semifinals.  A 22-20 victory over Zane Trace that came down to the last question in the semifinals sent them to the final match.  In the final, Chillicothe saw a 12-point halftime edge disappear.  But after falling behind 28-26, the Cavaliers rallied for 18 points over the next three minutes and eventually won 44-32. 

“Last year I really learned how the system worked, the rules of the competition,” said junior Dylan Crisp, the only member of the team who had experience competing in the South Central Ohio Regional Science Bowl.  “A lot of different people came up with big answers, especially Keegan (Francis).”

Participating schools included Chillicothe, Eastern Pike, Huntington Ross, Jackson, Lucasville Valley, Minford, New Boston, Northwest, Notre Dame, Pike County Career Technical Center, Piketon, Portsmouth, Portsmouth West, Sciotoville East, South Webster, Waverly, Western Pike and Zane Trace.

Besides Shawnee State University, DOE partners for the event included the Portsmouth Site Specific Advisory Board, the Southern Ohio Diversification Initiative, the Portsmouth Civic Forum, Centrus Energy Corp., and site contractors (Fluor-B&W Portsmouth, Restoration Services, Inc., Wastren-EnergX Mission Support, Babcock & Wilcox Conversion Services, InSolves, EHI Consultants, and Linear Path).

The National Science Bowl® is a nationwide academic competition that tests students’ knowledge in all areas of science and mathematics. Teams are comprised of four students, one alternate, and a teacher who serves as advisor and coach. The teams are quizzed in a fast-paced competition involving biology, chemistry, Earth science, physics, energy and mathematics.

The Department of Energy created the National Science Bowl in 1991 to encourage students to excel in mathematics and science and to pursue careers in these fields.  Nearly a quarter-million students have participated since it was established in 1991, and it is one of the nation’s largest science competitions.  DOE’s Office of Science manages the NSB Finals.

DOE Regional Coordinator Greg Simonton (left), and Chillicothe High School coach Joshua Queen join members of the winning Chillicothe High School Science Bowl team. (Left to right) Dylan Crisp, Matthew Wagner, Noah Wright-Piekarski, Claire Schmitt and Keegan Francis.

Students compete at the DOE South Central Ohio Regional Science Bowl at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio, on Friday, March 13, 2015.

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