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High School Brain Battle
Acadec Team
Members of the Escalon Academic Decathlon team gather with coach George Megenney, left, as they prepare for the annual battle of the brains in San Joaquin County. Photo Contributed


The first round of competition is complete – with Escalon’s Academic Decathlon starters handling a series of essays and interviews on Saturday, Jan. 31 at the county Office of Education in Stockton. This week, the entire team – starters and alternates – will take part in multiple tests and the starting nine will represent Escalon High in the Super Quiz.

AcaDec coach George Megenney said the team worked hard to prepare for the academic competition.

“The kids said they felt very good after the interviews and essays,” Megenney said.

This year’s team includes Honors starters Lily Koller, Leone Rivers and Roxana Morales, Scholastic starters Zach Brown, Mitzy Saucedo and Caitlyn Pehl and Varsity starters Alicia Williams, Ashley Nichols and Mariana Alvarado.

“The theme this year is energy and energy conservation,” added Megenney, with the team meeting regularly well in advance of the competition to prepare.

This weekend, all AcaDec team members can take part in tests covering art, economics, language/literature, math, music, social science and science, with the testing this year being done at Lathrop High School.

Also due on Saturday, Feb. 7 at 2 p.m. will be the Super Quiz, which is the only event open to the public. Escalon’s starting nine will face off with countywide opponents in the Super Quiz format, and that will be staged in the large gym at Lathrop High. The awards ceremony follows the Super Quiz event, also at the Lathrop High gym.

Thirteen schools from the county are taking part this year, county ed officials said, including Escalon, Lathrop, Lincoln, Manteca, McNair, Middle College, Tracy, West, Chavez, Millennium, and Mountain House, along with Stockton Early College Academy and Humphrey’s ABLE.

The winning team moves on to represent San Joaquin County at the state level in Sacramento in March and there are also cash awards available for top scorers and medals awarded for achievements in the multiple subject areas.