Our considered opinion, after the middle school playoffs and analyzing scores -- is that fully five teams were good enough to win the championship “on any given Friday.”
This was the second Hollidaysburg vs Ramsey Gold matchup. Hollidaysburg won the match in the prelims, 210-205. In the Finals, Hollidaysburg mounted a 60-50 lead at the end of the first period. Ramsey grabbed the lead, 170-105 at halftime, after sweeping the first two bonus series, TREATIES and LITERARY PLOTS. In the 70 Seconds round, Hollidaysburg advanced 60-20 on their category, ANIMALS. Ramsey Gold got 80 to Hollidaysburg’s 10 on NEW YORK ATTRACTIONS. The score at the start of the final period: Ramsey 270, Hollidaysburg 175. Ramsey only scored on two “Stump the Experts” questions, about the Han ethnic group and the “1619 Project.” Hollidaysburg scored on a pH question, on the term “woke” in the context of race, and on this Bible question: “When the Wise Men came from the East, what city did they first come to?” (Ans. Jerusalem). It was not enough to overcome Ramsey’s success in the Bonus and 70 Seconds rounds. The final was Ramsey Gold 310, Hollidaysburg 275. Ramsey Junior High is the first ever to win the title after going 4-2 in the prelims. It was the third time in the 14 years of tournament history that Arkansas has captured the title – with three different schools -- and the first time since 2017 that Kentucky has not claimed a national championship.