Firestone High School's Academic Challenge team won the final competition of the season, becoming the first Akron Public Schools team to take home the program's championship trophy. The final score was 570 for Firestone. Hawken High School of Chesterland came in second with 540, and Beachwood High School came in third with 480.
Firestone seniors Katherine Gilbert, Bijan Pakdel and Sterling Shriber competed in the final show. Other team members included seniors Arian Daneshvar, Rowan Matney and Alex Pica.
"Besides a big trophy and bragging rights, our team received a check from sponsor Westfield Insurance for $6,000," team coach Alison Seefeldt said.
WEWS Channel 5 TV produces Academic Challenge as a way to spotlight academic excellence. This year, 78 teams competed. Each week, three teams battled for points by answering questions covering such topics as math, science, history and current events. At the end of each program, the points were totaled; and, at season's end, the three highest scoring teams returned for the championship match.
The championship show was taped April 21 at WEWS studios in Cleveland, but results were kept secret until the program aired on June 9. The team will be interviewed on Channel 5 Monday, June 11, during one of the station's news segments.
A Firestone team last ranked in the Academic Challenge Top 10 in the 2007-08 school year.
For more information go to http://tinyurl.com/bojxvls or call Alison Seefeldt at 330.873.3315.