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Two big finishes for Friday Harbor at Orca Bowl; A team wins first, B team wins fourth
Teams from Friday Harbor placed first and fourth in the Washington State Ocean Sciences Bowl, or Orca Bowl, Saturday in Seattle.
Friday Harbor High School's A team of Stewart Bell, Audrey Olshefsky, Nick Roberts, Matthew Skeels and Hannah Snow won first place. Friday Harbor's B team of Nicole Le Baron, Graham Ellis, Elle Guard and Gavin Guard placed fourth. The students were coached by Max Maliska, a graduate student at the U.W. Friday Harbor Labs; and Nick Frazee, a teacher at Friday Harbor High School.
The A team advances to the National Ocean Sciences Bowl, all expenses paid, in St. Petersburg, Fla. on April 23-25. The B team won a kayaking trip in the San Juans.
The day-long Orca Bowl competition challenges high school students’ knowledge of oceans. Done in a round-robin style, followed by double elimination, the students are questioned on a variety of topics including ocean-related biology, chemistry, geology, physics, social sciences and technology.
Raechel Waters, associate director of Sea Grant, the organization that hosts the competition, described the last stages of the competition as “nail biting.” The deciding round saw Friday Harbor competing with last year’s winners, the home schooled ExCEL Academic League of Vancouver, Wash.
“They were perfectly matched,” Waters said. “It was great.”
The event is a program of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership. About 2,000 students from more than 400 high schools participate in 25 regional competitions. It is an educational forum, designed to encourage what the National Ocean Sciences Bowl calls “the next generation of marine scientists, policy makers, teachers, explorers, technicians, environmental advocates and informed citizens.”