BY SCOTT HUNTER HADDOW
The Lockerby Composite School Reach for the Top team has mastered the art of combining knowledge with lightning quick reflexes.
This deadly combination resulted in the team winning the city championships in late March, and now it has its collective sights set on the best Reach for the Top teams in the province.
All year long, the Lockerby team defeated opponent after opponent, winning 25 matches and losing just one.
?It really tests the students general knowledge,? said John Walton, team coach. ?These students are really focused and diligent and they have all worked hard all year long to get here.?
The team will now head to the University of Toronto, Scarborough Campus for the Ontario Federation of School Athletics Association (OFSAA) Reach for the Top Championship from May 14 to 16 for the round robin challenges. They will square off against the top 40 teams from across the province.
The team is guaranteed seven matches, and if they make the top 14 teams, they will go onto the championship round, which will be aired on TV Ontario in Toronto May 16 to 18.
Reach for the Top is a question and answer quiz game focusing on a broad range of topics. Teams square off, four against four, to answer the questions and win points.
The Lockerby team is well balanced for the battle.
?We all bring different assets to the team,? said team member Joseph Richards. ?It?s what makes us good.?
Richards, 17, is the team captain and a politics master. Natalie Tchajkov, 18, is the science, religion and human body expert; Jordan Stopciati, 15, the youngest member of the team, is a math wizard and general knowledge specialist; Yan Yeung, 17, the school?s valedictorian, is the music guru; Richard Gauthier, 17, is the sports king; and Nick Kerton, 16, is another general knowledge boss.
Having all the knowledge in the world is no good if you don?t have speedy reflexes.
?It?s all about buzzing in,? said Richards. ?You can know all kinds of things, but if you are not fast enough on the buzzer, the other team gets to answer. We all have good instincts, so we should do well.?
Going to the provincial championship is a fabulous opportunity for the squad.
Tchajkov has been on the team for four years and is looking forward to seeing her team match up with the best. She also enjoys soaking up the knowledge.
?You learn a lot playing this game,? said Tchajkov. ?To be successful in Toronto, we will have to be confident and focused.?