ROCKVILLE – The James Hubert Blake High School community is still celebrating their record-shattering victory in the “It’s Academic” Superbowl that aired June 28 on NBC4.
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“It’s Academic” is the longest-running television quiz show in the world, as recognized by “The Guinness Book of World Records”. In its 51st season on-air, Blake made history with a three-peat victory.
Graduated senior captain Mary Aronne, junior Elana Harris and sophomore Jeremy Dowling, along with their coach Joe Caulfield, comprise the winning team for the 2013-2014 school years.
Before the Blake team could ever dream of competing in the Superbowl once again, they faced 81 local teams with a 38-11 record.
Their stellar season eventually led them to the D.C. area championship against Montgomery Blair and Holton Arms. Blake finished the 30-minute game with a high score of 530. Montgomery Blair ended with 305 and Holton Arms with 340.
With that victory under their belt, the Blake team entered the Superbowl against champions from The Bennett School in Baltimore and Charlottesville High School in Central Virginia. Blake once again emerged victorious, becoming the only team in “It’s Academic” history to win three consecutive Superbowl appearances.
Although Aronne, Harris, and Dowling are strong contenders, their coach has also won praise. In the 16 years that Blake High School has been open, Caulfield has been coaching and motivating groups of students to compete on “It’s Academic.”
Caulfield was the first-ever recipient of the Sophie Altman “It’s Academic” Coach of the Year Award in 2009.
While also teaching English, journalism and SAT prep at Blake, Caulfield called his coaching gig a “selfish pleasure, a hobby” and something he is happy to be doing on his own time.
Caulfield said the team’s new record did not come easily.
“It’s no secret that it took a lot of hard work and sacrifices,” Caulfield said.
Caulfield said he feels confident about next year’s team. Although senior captain Aronne is headed to the University of Maryland- Baltimore Campus with the Meyerhoff Scholars Program, he has his two other starters and a new student in the mix.
Caulfield said the goal is always to do as well as they can, but they are still going to be chasing after that championship like they’ve been doing every year.
Elana Harris is stepping up to the plate as next season’s senior captain. Reflecting on her part in making “It’s Academic” history, she said she was “elated.”
Harris said she recognizes the pressure that comes with being the undefeated champions, but she just wants to have fun doing what she loves in her final year at Blake.
Blake High School Principal Chris Berry said he is proud to be part of a school with students who push boundaries and achieve greatness.
“To win one championship is a feat in and of itself,” Berry said. “But to have won three in a row shows a true commitment on the part of many students and staff. It is truly like climbing Mt. Everest three times.”