Bowled Over for Science


Chaminade's "bowling" team: (Lower right to left) Bryce Blanton '16, Gabby Najm '??, Jimmy Antaki '??, and Brian Fabian '??, are not about to eat slices of chocolate cake with berries on top, but they're ready to hit the buzzers and answer some science questions. Photo provided by Talon Contributor Sarah Wong '14.

Chaminade’s “bowling” second team: (seated lower right to left) Bryce Blanton ’16, Gabby Najm ’14, Jimmy Antaki ’14, Brian Fabian ’15, are not about to eat slices of chocolate cake with berries, but they’re ready to hit the buzzers and answer some serious questions that for them are as easy as pie. Photo provided by Talon Contributor Sarah Wong ’14.

 

Ingredients for a Science Bowl: Gather a dozen budding biologists, chemists, physicists, astronomers. Add one or two Chaminade physical science teachers. Mix in homemade cupcakes. Whip up some friendships. Shake. Bake.

Sarah Wong founded the ‘Nade bowl team with fellow senior Nicolo Zulaybar in the California winter of 2012 with only five underclassmen and women. They only won half their rounds that first bowl, but became fast friends and a competitive group.
Science “Bowling” is a Jeopardy game-buzzer competition that challenges high school students with college-level, interdisciplinary questions on different physical sciences.
It’s more than just a bunch of weekly study sessions and buzzing practices.  Times shared over Papa John’s pizzas, senior Gabby Najm’s homemade cupcakes, and late-night practices with pumpkin bread have cultivated long-lasting friendships.
Led by Captain Zulaybar, competitors Andre Gaona ’14, Evan Maltz ’14, Hayley Bricker ’14 and Brandon Fields ’15, beat veteran teams from El Camino to Palisades high schools, to earn fifth-place out of 42 teams.
On the second team, led by senior Jimmy Antaki ’14, Miss Najm, Brian Fabian ’15, Adam Harwood ’15 and Bryce Blanton ’16, were successful in their division and competed in the hands-on event building a rocket. With the support of their coach, Ms. Christina Buck, a Chaminade chemistry instructor, former coach and department chair, Ms. Laura Willnerd (no longer at West Hills), and parents and classmates, including senior Emily Tronson, the mad skills Science Bowl competitions have equipped these students with is immeasurable.
Having a bittersweet conversation over a meal as a team at the Yard House restaurant in Los Angeles following the Feb. 22 competition, the team listened to new, junior first team captain Fields’ inaugural address as he promised to continue the team’s tradition of achieving success and put forth a word that encapsulated the past two years, family.

Future “bowlers” contact [email protected].