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The Student News Site of Seward High School

SHS Today

The Student News Site of Seward High School

SHS Today

Seward NOSB Team Travels to Ketchikan and Seattle

(From Back left to right, Esme Wilder, Coach Mica Van Buskirk, Emily Anger, John Van Buskirk, Otto Nipp, Coach Janice Haas, Fern Hinders, Gracie Russell, Maddie Haas, and Selah Brueckner.)

Ketchikan hosted the Southeast Regional Ocean Science Bowl during February 16th-18th, where the Seward NOSB (National Ocean Science Bowl) team embarked on this opportunity to participate.

Over the course of three days, NOSB teams from Juneau, Seward, and Ketchikan competed in the “Joonax Bowl.” Members Maddie Haas, Gracie Russell, Emily Anger, Fern Hinders, Otto Nipp, John Van Buskirk, Selah Brueckner, Esme Wilder, and Coaches Janice Haas and Mica Van Buskirk left early morning on February 16th to make it to the first rounds. After a five-hour connecting flight to Ketchikan, the Seward team made their way to Kayhi to begin the quiz bowl.

In a typical quiz bowl, teams of four compete together answering various questions surrounding topics all about the ocean. Areas of study like geology, chemistry, biology, nautical skills, and many more are all topics that can be found in a trivial NOSB round. However, instead of the already established teams, The Joonax Bowl consisted of a different setup. Teams were mixed up from across the different towns to create a more level and competitive ocean bowl round. Each team had members from Ketchikan, Juneau, and Seward. 

After a successful first day at the Joonax Bowl, the varied teams met again at Kayhi to compete in the next set of trivia. Four rounds were completed, which gave the scorekeepers the data they needed to determine the next day’s final competition.

After the final trivia sets, the teams were invited to tour one of Ketchikan’s hatcheries. Seward member Otto thought it was interesting to see “how many fish they could fit into all the little boxes.” After experiencing first hand what it’s like to manage and oversee a hatchery, the Seward team headed over to Ketchikan’s coastline to check out some of the tide pools. Everyone found different organisms, from harbor seals to copepods, that the team was now able to observe first hand on the beach.

After some more sightseeing and exploration, the Seward team headed back to Kayhi to compete in the last rounds of the Joonax Bowl. The final championship was split between two brackets: the consolation and winners. Seward team members John Van Buskirk and Emily Anger competed against one another during the consolation round, where an intensely close round was unveiled. Emily Anger described this match as “the most exciting one yet. We were tied with the other team the whole time, making it incredibly stressful. We wouldn’t have won if it wasn’t for my teammate, Owen, unbelievable buzzer-beater answer.”

The teams in the winners bracket consisted of “Rock Bottom” with Seward’s Gracie Russell, Ketchikan’s Kelvin Jiang, Ty Woods, and 

Juneau’s Sam Cheng. The other team was the “Saber Toothed Crimson Seahawks” with Seward’s Maddie Haas, Ketchikan’s Sanjeev Putta, and Juneau’s Edward Hu. The Saber Toothed Crimson Seahawks ended up taking the win after a semi-close final championship round.

Now that the quiz bowl was over, the Seward team planned on heading over to Juneau to tour and meet with representatives at the state capital. However, the flights ended up getting canceled, which caused a spontaneous trip to Seattle. With a 9-hour layover, the team had lots of time to explore this marine-rich city.

Pikes Place Market was the first area of interest, where everyone browsed the local shops and observed many of the fish-related emporiums. The Seattle Aquarium provided a unique opportunity to use their knowledge of ocean science and identify some of the different components. Also, from atop the Seattle Ferris Wheel, they got a bird’s eye view of the town and ocean. 

While their trip didn’t end up going exactly as planned, it was still an exciting experience. The team is now preparing for the state competition held in Seward on March 18th-21st.


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