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Notes from GA Day 4
- Each GA always opens with the Pledge of Allegiance, the JCL Creed, and lastly the JCL song. I thought the song today was particularly good. Nice work, v’omnes!
- Voting for National Officers occurred during GA. While the votes are counted, a JCL chorus sings a few songs. There were excellent this year. OH singers included Mark Samaan, Alex Might, Patrick O’Connor, and Samuel Yun.
- There was tribute to Anne Covington (VA) who started the National Latin Honor Society in 1989. Membership was $1 then, and it is still $1 – what a bargain. All members must maintain an A average through April, and each school can then add its own requirements. [Inductees for Summit must also participate in 4 Latin-sponsored events and complete an application form with essay.]
- Another ‘Latin Pays Off’ Moment: Anna Delamerced won the ‘Sister Jeanette Plante’ NJCL Scholarship! It is a $1,500 renewable scholarship. She certainly deserves it. go anna go
- The delegations of Nevada & Arizona did a short skit inviting everyone to next year’s NJCL Convention at UNLV in Las Vegas. ‘If it’s good enough for Caesar, it’s good enough for you.’
- Muhammad Patel led OH to a 3rd place finish in Spirit before today’s GA. His efforts yielded real results: the prize was a ‘play food’ set. The spirit prizes are always in the ‘fun but stupid’ category. The single delegate from Hawaii won for Small Schools and received ice-cream-shaped chalk.
- A student who had lost her lanyard – with her name tag and room keys and dining hall pass – was forced to sing on stage to get it back. She did not know the lyrics to ‘Call Me Maybe,’ so she sang – with gestures – ‘I’m a Little Teapot.’ The very powerful Amy Elifrits joined in to lend gravitas to the song.
All the teams played at 10:30 in the Semis. Coach Chris went with the Uppers, I watched the Lowers, and Michael Cowett was with the Novice team. Believe it or not, the rounds can get pretty contentious pretty fast. Nothing violent, because Certamen has been a non-contact activity since the riot of 1997, but people can get quite excited if they do not like a decision regarding a question. So each of us served as the official OH ‘coach’ for the different levels.
I will start with the Lowers since I was actually there. It was a terrific round, very well played by all teams, with little controversy. Every round has 20 toss-up questions (worth 10 pts), and each toss-up has 2 bonus questions (worth 5 pts each). So 400 possible points in all. Good matches are usually won with a score in the low 100’s. The score after 5 questions: OH 15, VA 15, IL 10. After 10 questions: OH 30, VA 40, IL 40. After 15: OH 60, VA 80, IL 40. So, with 5 questions to go, the Lowers were basically down by just 1 question. Unfortunately, we never got those points, and VA qualified for the Finals: OH 60, VA 115, IL 60. The certamen future is bright for Captain Ben, Sameer, Kevin, and Jesse.
My only involvement in the round was a request to have the moderator read the Latin more slowly. He seemed a bit surprised but did in fact slow up and make the Latin more easy to understand. I do not like to involve myself in the rounds, but others in the room later thanked me, so I am glad I said something.
The Uppers got off to a rough start, and VA pulled out to a commanding lead early in the round. Neither OH nor GA was able to overcome the deficit, and VA (again) won the round and advanced to the Finals. Coach Chris was very proud that the Uppers never gave up and noted that the team took 3 of the last 4 questions. They even had some fun near the end and answered one bonus with ‘Pupienus’ (get it, Poop-ienus…) and another with ‘Book of Yolo.’ Next year, OH will certainly miss Tom Carroll, a great Latin scholar and a former OJCL officer and just a fine all-around young man. Tom was always an excellent role model for others and showed that you can be good at certamen and still have a sense of humor. go tom go
And now for the Novice team! No suspense: they won the match & qualified for the Finals! It has been quite a few years since an OH team has made the Finals. And it is a tribute to the older players – and to Coach Chris Lapp in particular – that they accomplished this. The OH certamen approach is based upon older players teaching the younger players and thus learning the material better themselves. Discimus docendo, ‘we learn by teaching.’ The really cool thing is this: the Upper and Lower players feel that they are part of the Novice team’s success – because they are. Some of my best teaching in the summer is when I get out the way and do nothing. The older students are in charge and know what the younger students need to know. So, it will not just be the Novice team on the Big Stage tomorrow, but the whole OH group. go ohio go
Now a quick recap of the match. The match was close the entire time. Surprisingly, it was a battle between OH the 7th seed and GA the 6th seed, with 1st seed VA in the background. The outcome hinged upon a ruling on a history question: were the Cimbri & Teutones Germanic or Gallic tribes? The ruling (which took about 30 minutes – yes, 30 minutes): they were either Germanic or Gallic. The outcome: Adam had called them Gallic in his answer, so OH was awarded the points. This gave OH a slim lead over GA heading into the final question, but VA was quick to the buzz, took the final question, and sealed the victory for the OH Novice team. The finals are tomorrow at 10 AM against #2 seed FL and #4 seed MA.
Random Stuff from Day 4
President Heather Smith sang ‘Pricetag’ to the OH delegation at Fellowship. Tino ‘McDaddy’ Delamerced joined in for the rappin’ portion of the song. The crowd went wild.
Maddie Briner has taken every test except 1 the past 3 NJCL’s: ‘I’ve never placed on any of them, and I’m majoring in Latin!’
The Sponsors Banquet was this evening. Good food with good company. Melissa – not as powerful as Amy but perhaps as powerful as the SCL – got hold of my camera when I left the table. Check out her special eye for interesting shots on the Shutterfly account.
Another award for an OH person! Brian Compton – former State Chair, Co-Chair of the 2008 NJCL convention at Miami, future Chair of the 2018 NJCL Convention at Miami, Moeller teacher, veteran bus rider, seasoned SCL’er – won the prestigious ‘Summa Cum Laude’ Award. go brian go
The talent and variety show called ‘That’s Entertainment!’ was the big event tonight. The omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, and indispensable SCL hosts the show, and the JCL supplies the talented acts. Only 12 of 53 acts made the show. The Racketeers made their usual appearance, but I fear it is their last. For the first time ever, they removed the racket covers from their heads, and I take this as their parting ‘ave atque vale.’ There were some good Olympic spoofs, a time traveling van in the officer skit, and a very compelling drag race.. It was top rate entertainment.