Knowledge Bowl shines at LNI, regions

The Custer High School Knowledge Bowl team won both the team championship at the Lakota Nation Invitational two weeks ago in Rapid City. Team members were, from left, back, Justus Kramer, advisor Nora Smolnisky, Gage McGarrigle; front, Anna Marie Riner and Nathan Steele.

The Custer High School Knowledge Bowl team was awarded a wildcard seat at the recent regional competition, where both the Northern and Southern Hills come together to compete against one another.  

Custer went in seeded ninth out of 18 teams. The team finished in fifth place, behind Rapid City Stevens’ top team, St. Thomas More, Spearfish and Hill City.  

After regions the team was invited to participate in the Lakota Nation Invitational (LNI) Knowledge Bowl competition. 

In individual competition, the following students placed highest in their subject area and earned a plate

Nathan Steele (senior) – English Literature IV and Grammar IV

Anna Marie Riner (junior) – American History

Gage McGarrigle (junior) – Health and Chemistry

In double elimination team competition, Nathan Steele, Anna Marie Riner, Gage McGarrigle and Justus Kremer participated in seven matches with the following results:

Match 1: Win by forfeit

Match 2: Win vs CEB

Match 3: Win vs TF Riggs

Match 4: Loss to Red Cloud

Match 5: Win vs. St. Francis 

Match 6: Win vs. Red Cloud

Match 7: Win vs. Red Cloud

The team left the LNI as team champions and, averaging in individual results, overall champions.  

“As the only non-native team involved in the LNI Knowledge Bowl Competition, we are so thankful to the LNI committee for the invitation to participate,” said Knowledge Bowl advisor Nora Smolnisky. “LNI is an incredible event and it was a privilege to be involved.”  

Other team members include Willow Williamson, Ida Jacobsen, Hannah Marshall, Zach Douglas and Dylan Polzine.