Several times each week, many UR students gather around a table full of buzzers and battle to see who can answer the most questions correctly, quizzing each other in the Lovejoy Hall basement and taking their knowledge around the country to represent the university.These students are members of the school’s Thelion Society, a name created in the founding year of 2001 for UR’s Quiz Bowl Team. The organization is a multifaceted group, competing in both academic and pop culture tournaments across the nation.About 75 percent of the tournaments are academically based, and UR offers up several teams to compete in the quiz bowls, with players of different levels of experience in each division. “It is important to get our name out academically to other schools,” junior Kaeti Stoss said.For those who prefer questions about the director of “Old School” to questions about medieval poetry, the pop culture segment of the organization is a popular choice. “People don’t need to be scared away by academic tournaments – people can always find something they are good at,” junior Melinda Morrison said.The Thelion Society is opening up their shared interests with the rest of the campus in their URTrash pop culture tournament, when students can gather teams of four to enter the intramural games. It is March 27 in Wilson Commons from 12-4 p.m., and the money collected will be donated to charity.While this opportunity is offered to give a taste of what quiz bowl is all about, the Thelion Society of 30 members experience the intensity of the sport, competing against teams from across the eastern United States and Canada. The organization participates in about 10 tournaments each school year, with each tournament comprised of 14 games in a round-robin style.The Thelion Society boasts at least a top three placement in every tournament in the past two years, as well as members who are part of the defending Regional Team, which also placed third in Nationals. President and sophomore Dan Blake leads the group, with the assistance of executive board members sophomore Gordon Arsenoff, Morrison and Stoss. George Flevares, a 1999 graduate, coaches the group.Although the organization has accomplished a lot in their young existence, the members especially emphasize the social component. “The best part for me is the companionship,” said Morrison. “It’s a lot of fun playing the game but it’s a lot of fun playing the game with these people.”The camaraderie amongst the group is obvious in the way they interact, and senior Michael Adelman said that “the group is unique in the closeness of our troupe in the quiz bowl world.”This strength of the group and unity in this respect translates into success in the quiz bowl community. The Thelion Society has found its niche within campus life and in tournaments as they face other teams. The members of this group share a passion for their activity, and are extremely welcoming to new members to become involved. The Thelion Society meets Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 7:30 p.m. in Lovejoy 117, and encourage any interested students to attend.
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