Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Team wins Porter-Gaud

The A-Team continues its undefeated season

Bellamy Kline described Academic Magnet’s Academic Team as “AMHS’s best performing sport,” a title reinforced by its incredible performance at the Fifth Annual Porter-Gaud School Invitational.

The event was hosted at Porter-Gaud School, a private college preparatory school in West Ashley, on Saturday, February 24th. Academic Magnet entered with three teams with the following compositions:

AMHS’s A Team playing its B Team

A Team:

  • Kabir Zaman
  • Jessie Ross
  • John McQueen
  • Scarlet Rutter
  • Andrew Angermeier

B Team:

  • Carter Dryden
  • Nicholas Edwards
  • Coltrane Margosian
  • Ava Trolley
  • Amelia McMarlin

C Team:

  • Lu Oppelt
  • Lillian Osbon
  • Peyton Schultz
  • Nikki Wu
  • Sameen Basunia

Before the tournament, Ava Trolley and I worked to make a design which I had made into T-shirts which all of our teams wore for the first time the day of. Ava sketched a design on paper and I adapted it into a 3D model and rasterized it into a graphic. If you ask me, we had the coolest shirts of any team playing at Porter-Gaud this year.

The C Team was composed of five people, all of whom had never been in a quiz bowl tournament other than the ongoing districts tournament before. Considering this, the C team did incredibly. The team’s record at the tournament was 6-3.

In the first seven games, the C team lost to James Island and two teams which would make it to the top bracket: Socastee A and AMHS A. They beat Dorman B, Southside B, York Prep B, and Conway A. After rebracketing and the final two games, the C team beat both Conway B and Wando. When playing Conway A, the C team won by five points, the slimmest victory possible short of a tie-breaker.

The team’s star player was Lu Oppelt, who was the tenth best performing player in the entire tournament. As described by Lillian Osbon, she “got like half the toss-ups.”

The B Team was the team I was on and dare I say we popped off. The team went undefeated for four games, beating Southside A, York Prep A, Socastee B, and Wando, though all of us were genuinely stunned by our victory against Wando after what we thought was a losing game. It was Dorman A, who would later go on to get second place in the tournament, who we lost to, losing by a very slim thirty points. Our sixth and seventh games were against Conway C and Conway B, both of whom we beat.

Our single loss before rebracketing put us in the top bracket, putting us against Socastee A and our own A Team. Our team lost to Socastee A by twenty points, even closer than Dorman A, and well, you can probably imagine how we did playing Academic Magnet’s A team. Overall, the B Team made it to fourth place in the tournament of sixteen, a great feat for a team which had gotten eighth only a year ago.

The best players on the B Team were Amelia McMarlin and Carter Dryden, who both did an incredible job getting questions having to do with all categories, but the former specializing in literature and mythology and the latter specializing in history and geography. Amelia was the fourth best performing player at Porter-Gaud this year.

And now, the A Team, which went undefeated against Conway A, AMHS C, Socastee A, York Prep B, James Island, Dorman B, Southside B, AMHS B, and triumphantly, Dorman A. The team absolutely crushed it. Having already played against many of the teams playing in Porter-Gaud in prior tournaments or even just before rebracketing, they were able to provide some very helpful insight regarding teams the B and C Teams had not played.

All of the A Team’s members were critical to the team, but the most cracked this time around was co-captain Jessie Ross, who was the second best performing player at Porter-Gaud this year in the whole tournament, celebrating his victory with the copy of Sun Tzu’s The Art of War he earned as a prize. The only player who outperformed him was Caleb Slusher, who carried Dorman A to their second place position on the leaderboard but could not stop Academic Magnet’s A Team! In another incredible feat, Kabir Zaman was the sixth best performing player this tournament.

They were really good, but also really nice!

— A Socastee student

After having won the Alpha Lambda Delta Challenge in Columbia 10-0 as well as Academic Magnet winning every district game in the ongoing tournament, the A Team is currently undefeated this season. Through personal experience, I know that these people as a collective know everything. Just everything. And I am certainly glad to see Socastee A and Dorman A be put in their place (Just kidding, good job both teams). One of the greatest compliments to the A Team was in the words of a Socastee A player: “They were really good, but also really nice!”

Due to their incredible performance this season, Academic Magnet’s A Team has been invited to and will be attending the NAQT 2024 High School National Championship Tournament on May 24th-26th of this year. Last year, the team placed 65th out of 304 teams during nationals, and with another year’s worth of experience under their belt, there is no doubt that the A Team will perform incredibly at nationals this year.

Between and during the games, both the A and B Teams stayed on the grind and mogged their opponents by maintaining their mewing streak. Porter-Gaud was a prime time to continue looksmaxxing as always and though we couldn’t bonesmash without our hammers, we were carried to our victories by mewing. All of us were truly locked in.

I would like to thank Ms. Vann and Maria Rutter for also being there at Porter-Gaud this year. Ms. Vann was the team’s coach and handled the paperwork as well as getting Chick-fil-A for those who ordered it. She also kept score at many of our games which was really helpful. Maria is always there during Thursday practices to read out questions for us and at Porter-Gaud, she was one of the people reading questions and making judgment calls during the actual tournament games, which is something I know I could never do.

When the Academic Team isn’t chowing down on pizza Thursday evenings, they are absolutely killing it at tournaments, and this year’s Porter-Gaud is no exception to that.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All THE TALON Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *