ZHS Knowledge Bowl team given thunderous sendoff

by Briana Sutherland

Contributing writer

Strategy, quick thinking and teamwork is what Jacob Hassing, Zachary Raph, Matt Onarheim, Steven Haupert and Jon Hanson all have in common being a part of the Knowledge Bowl team.

Thursday morning the Zimmerman High School students and faculty sent these five students, proudly dressed in their matching Knowledge Bowl shirts, to the state competition in Brainerd.

Peter Pouliot, Knowledge Bowl adviser, couldn’t be more proud of the team.

“Several of the coaches at other meets have complimented me on how the team works together so well,” he said.

The students agree with the assessment.

“We have a great sense of teamwork in the way we work and come together in the end,” said Raph.

The Zimmerman team directly competed for the state title against 24 other schools in their division that have outlasted hundreds of other teams across the state. At the conclusion of the Knowledge Bowl season, the teams competed in sub-regions and regions tournaments to qualify for a chance at the state bowl.

“It’s a really fun way to compete and a way to test our knowledge,” said Hassing, the team captain, about being part of the Knowledge Bowl team. “It’s a great activity with general information that can help in other classes.”

The team trains using a program that provides thousands of questions in various categories. Each member has a category he specializes in, but isn’t limited to only that category.

The team competed in 14 meets with over 70 teams per meet since they began competing in mid-December, placing no lower than fifth in each meet. They hit a temporary streak of placing fifth in four consecutive meets until they found their secret weapon.

“They play Risk between rounds to help blow off steam,” Pouliot said,

They placed third after playing the game between meets for the first time. Since then, the team eagerly looks forward to playing Risk between each round.

Some wonder what is the most challenging about being part of Knowledge Bowl.

“The hardest thing is knowing information surrounding an answer, but not knowing the answer,” said Onarheim.

The team challenged their teachers for fun to a match during lunch Wednesday and walked away victorious. Their hope is to have the same outcome at the state tournament.


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