Eighth grader Tom Knight has won the Cooperstown Middle School Geography Bee for the second year in a row.
“It felt like something that was really good to finally accomplish,” said Knight, on his win. “There’s sort of more pressure on you being a repeat winner.”
In addition to winning the Cooperstown Middle School Geography Bee twice, Knight won the Cooperstown Elementary School Geography Bee two years in a row prior to his wins in middle school.
“It’s actually a fourpeat,” said Knight.
The Cooperstown Middle School Geography Bee involves questions about physical geography, as well as questions on cities and capitals. While most of the questions focus on the United States, some are also internationally based.
To qualify to participate this year Knight, along with the rest of his eighth grade class, had to take a test, the top five finishers of which would compete for the geography bee title against the top five finishers from seventh grade.
Knight almost didn’t make it to this final stage however, as he tied for the last two spots with four other students, after all four of them got 23 answers right on the 25 question test.
In order to decide these final two spots, a four-question geography bee was held. Knight got all four of these questions right, while the next best performer, Victoria Sacchi, got two, qualifying them both for the final competition.
Participants in the final competition had to write their answers down on a white board, and the contest was held in the Cooperstown Middle/High School auditorium in front of the entire seventh and eighth grade classes. Participants were allowed to get one question wrong, but if they got a second error, they were eliminated.
Knight got an error during the competition, after he was asked in what state on the pacific ocean the Chugach Mountain Range is located. Knight answered Washington State, but the Chugach Range is located in Alaska.