A team of students from Rockville High School led their school to victory in the "It's Academic" Superbowl, beating the champions of the Baltimore and Central Virginia regions on May 22.
A total of 163 public and private schools participated in the 38th season of the high school academic quiz program over a period of 40 weeks, leading up to the Superbowl. The three teams advanced to the Superbowl after winning the semifinals for their regions.
Members of the winning Rockville team are team captain Aaron Benor, who will attend New York University in the fall, Matt Denio, who will enter Brown University, and junior Todd Hutner. Team alternates are juniors Matt Malament and Daniel Maggin. Coaches are Kevin Keegan and Linda Mencarini.
The Rockville students beat teams from Winston Churchill High School and St. Alban's in Washington, D.C. to win the Washington-area championship. In total, 81 public and private schools in the Washington area participated in the academic quiz program this year.
Rockville advanced to the Washington area finals after beating teams from Montgomery Blair High School, which won the Superbowl in 1995, and Walter Johnson High School in the semifinals. Richard Montgomery High School also placed among the highest performing schools this year, giving the school system five of the seven top finishers in the contest. The final standings in the Washington metro area championship were: Rockville, first place; Churchill, third place; Blair, fourth place; Richard Montgomery, fifth place; and Walter Johnson, seventh place.
"It's Academic" tests knowledge on a wide variety of topics, mathematics reasoning, and ability to respond quickly and accurately. It was designed to provide young people with a showcase for their academic skills. High school students selected for their school's team train for matches as an extracurricular activity at their respective schools.
The Superbowl Championship will air on WRC-TV, Channel 4, on June 26 at 7 p.m. The Washington metro-area championship will be broadcast at 10 a.m. on the same day.
All "It's Academic" teams are awarded a $275 scholarship for participating, while winning teams earn additional scholarship money. Rockville's wins have garnered awards totaling $2,675. Scholarships are awarded to deserving students at the discretion of each school, not necessarily to team members.
Giant Food has sponsored "It's Academic" since 1967 and has donated more than $2 million dollars in scholarships during that time.