Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • CHS Knowledge Bowl team reaches new heights at state

  • Crookston places second in best showing ever


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  • It was a whirlwind trip for five Crookston High School Knowledge Bowl members who qualified for the state meet but also a very fortunate one, as the team placed second out of the 24 schools competing in Class A. That's CHS's best showing to date, after several appearances at state.
    Chris Larson, Dan Cooley, Jordan Rauner, Luke Loegering, Max Wolpert and their advisor, Jesse Rasmussen, left Crookston for the competition at Cragun's Resort in Brainerd right after the CHS Theater Department's morning performance of “The Music Man” for senior citizens. They couldn't leave any earlier because the latter four were also characters in the play. The team arrived at the resort just in time to get settled in their rooms and dine at the banquet before starting their first round of written competition that evening.
    The bulk of the competition took place on Friday, with teams power ranked from the written round and grouped into rooms. Crookston ranked in the top six. After a grueling series of five 45-question oral rounds, Sebeka came out as the Class A state champ with a score of 162.5. Crookston followed with a score of 116.5. A tiebreaker was necessary to rank the next three, Sibley East, New London-Spicer and Duluth Marshall, all of which scored 112. The top three teams received trophies, with the top six receiving medals.
    As soon as the CHS team collected its awards and snapped a few photos, it was time to head back to Crookston, where the now-pumped actors/KB winners made it to the school with little time to spare before getting into makeup and costume.
    “I'm really proud of these kids, they have been working extremely hard practicing for the regular as well as the post season meets,” said Rasmussen. “They really deserved this.”
    According to Minnesota Service Cooperatives, which organizes the state's KB programs, Lakes Country Service Cooperative of Fergus Falls started the first one in 1979 with only eight school districts in western Minnesota. It has now grown to include more than 800 teams from across the state, with only 48 – 24 in Class A for smaller schools and 24 in Class AA for larger schools – making it to state.
    Crookston has never before scored in the top six, although the team has made it to state a number of times over the years after placing in the top five at the regionals in Thief River Falls. This was the team's fourth state appearance in five years. The CHS Blue Team is made up of the top KB members, but white and gold teams also compete during the regular season. Wolpert and Cooley were also named to the Region I/II (northwest Minnesota) All?Region Academic Conference team.
    Page 2 of 2 - Of the state Class A runner up team, Rauner and Cooley are seniors and the rest are juniors, which means they'll get another shot at state.
    Other CHS Knowledge Bowl members this year were Ben Dufault, Lyon Keasler, Isaac Loegering, Cyrina Ostgaard, Hannah Edlund, Noah Fagerlund, Ethan Pilger, Rachel Biermaier, Kurt Prudhomme, Caitlyn Wahouske and Heather Schumacher.