SAMS has strong showing at Academic Games competition

By Sienna Sterritt

If you would enjoy competing against students from across the state in a trivia-style competition, the Academic Games Team may be for you.

The Games are an extracurricular activity that pits Shaler students against students from other school districts. There are several Games each year and each round takes place at a different location.

Shaler students traveled to Seneca Valley for the most recent competition, which focused on trivia on former presidents. Participants prepared by studying historical and biographical facts and competed by answering questions that were worth points. They challenged students from seven other schools, and questions were worth 2, 4, or 6 points, with the latter questions being most challenging. 

The Games are run by our GATE teacher, Mr. Reagle, who created a Google Doc for players to use in preparation. Participants added facts about presidents, their careers, and their early lives, and they used the list as a study guide for the competition. The preparation helped as the Shaler team was very successful at Seneca Valley. 

Six SAMS students qualified for the Tri-Bowl, which is the next level of competition. Eighth grader Natalia Villella had the best showing, as she finished in 4th place out of over 100 other attendees. Seventh grader Nathaniel Burke and eighth grade Abigail Maher tied for 7th, and eighth grader Elizabeth Dunlevy finished in 9th. Two more seventh graders, Nora Leskowak and Alexis Jacobs, also qualified for the next round because they were within the top 10% of scores. 

Past competitions focused on Propaganda and Equations, and the next Games will feature Onsets, a math-based game for people who enjoy numbers. More information about the Games can be found at

Students who are not currently enrolled in Gate have the opportunity of participating in the games. Please contact Mr. Reagle if you are interested. He can be reached at

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