Essex High School won the Vermont-NEA Scholars' Bowl on Saturday, March 20 in a tournament that featured all matches held online.
EHS rallied to defeat Hanover High School, 225-180, in the championship match, scoring seven of the last eight correct answers to overcome a 45-point deficit in the last of three rounds of competition. It was the Hornets' record-setting ninth state championship and their sixth in the last eight contested years. The 2020 finals were canceled because of the pandemic.
The final was the culmination of a day of exciting online matches that featured nine schools from around the state.
EHS also had to make a comeback just to reach the championship match, answering the final question to edge Champlain Valley Union High School 245-230 in the semifinals. CVU led by as many as 55 points before EHS swept its eight final-round questions to fight back.
Anders Holm-Brown, Eric Lu, Elizabeth Messier, and Patrick Herrin made up the team, which was coached by David Rome.
Sponsored by the Vermont-NEA, the Scholars' Bowl is a question-and-answer quiz competition, similar to Jeopardy!, but featuring teams of high school students and with a heavier focus on the academic curriculum.
EHS, which finished the season with a 15-2 record in league play, earned the right to represent Vermont in the national competition in May or June.