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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.”

  1. Perennial contenders Warren (NJ) were edged by the eventual champs 470-440.
  2. Pleasant Knoll (SC), narrowly defeated by Ramsey Gold 325-285.
  3. Owensboro (KY), scoring more than any team in the first round of the playoffs, 480 points.
  4. Finalist Hollidaysburg (PA).
  5. Finalist Ramsey Gold (AR), which knocked defending champs Emerson (MI) out of the playoffs.

Ramsey Junior High fielded three teams. Their Gold team finished as National Champions.



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.

Hall of Fame

  • Jon Leidenheimer (Longfellow, VA, 2009-2011)
  • Myles Siglin (Flushing, MI, 2012-2014)
  • Brandon Fairchild (Johnson County, KY, 2013-2015)
  • Anna Zheng (Paideia, GA, 2014-2017)
  • Jonas Miller (Edmonson County, KY, 2018-2019)
  • Brody Johnson (Edmonson County, KY, 2018-2019)

winners of our 14 tournaments

  • 2008 - Bate Middle School (Danville, KY)
  • 2009 - Longfellow Middle School (Falls Church,VA)
  • 2010 - Longfellow Middle School (Falls Church,VA)
  • 2011 - Longfellow Middle School (Falls Church,VA)
  • 2012 - Trickum Middle School (Stone Mountain, GA)
  • 2013 - Flushing Middle School (Flushing, MI)
  • 2014 - Woodland Junior High School (Fayetteville, AR)
  • 2015 - Sutton Middle School (Atlanta, GA)
  • 2016 - Wooster Middle School (Wooster, OH)
  • 2017 - Chaffin Junior High School (Fort Smith, AR)
  • 2018 - Edmonson County (Brownsville, KY)
  • 2019 - Edmonson County (Brownsville, KY)
  • 2020 - Emerson School (MI) & Edmonson County (Brownsville, KY)
  • 2021 – Ramsey Junior High (AR)