New chapter in St Jago-Campion quiz rivalry
A win each in two semi-final matchups, the last of which required a sudden-death playoff, and a quarter-final face-off. That's the history of multitime quiz champions St Jago High and academic powerhouse Campion College over the past three seasons.
Come tomorrow night, they will add another chapter in one of Television Jamaica's Schools' Challenge Quiz's (SCQ) great recent rivalries as the 49th season comes to a head, with St Jago hunting title number five and Campion believing that the third time will prove the charm.
En route to this year's grand finale, the Spanish Town-based St Jago High bested Old Harbour High 27-19 in the semi-finals, having defeated defending champions Munro College in the previous round.
The St Andrew-based Campion College advanced to tomorrow's decisive game at the expense of two quiz juggernauts, over-whelming Ardenne High 48 to 27 in the semis after defeating Kingston College in the quarters.
Having last won the title in 2010, St Jago secured their place in the 2015 SCQ final by comfortably seeing off Campion in the semis but would succumb to Ardenne in the decider.
Campion exacted sudden-death revenge the following season in the semis but would then lose to Titchfield High in the final.
Yet again, the two locked horns in last year's quarter-final round, and with the match tied at 42-42 at the end of the buzzer challenge, sudden death was on the cards.
However, Campion College lost four points after a query during the break, and St Jago was declared the winner of the match.
Principals treating SCQ final as 'just another game'
While the competitive history between the two institutions can easily put the teams under pressure to deliver the goods in tomorrow's TVJ's Schools' Challenge Quiz (SCQ) final, both principals are viewing the match-up as "just another game".
"Our mantra throughout has been 'one game at a time'. We have been meeting Campion [College] over the past three years, with mixed results, and the matches have been epic," said Collette Feurtado-Pryce, principal of St Jago High.
"We acknowledge that Campion has a great team, but I believe that we have a resilient team that is capable of beating them on any given day."
Feurtado-Pryce said that St Jago has a strong tradition of excellence in SCQ, and it is the school's intention to live up to the examples set by previous teams and for this team to make its mark in continuing this tradition.
Her counterpart, Grace Baston, acknowledged that Campion College could not boast a rich SCQ culture. However, with this being their third final appearance in five years, Baston declared her team a force to be reckoned with.
"Obviously, you want them to win. Winning would be great, but I remind them every time - it's a game like every other game and to win it is great, but I care much more that they enjoy themselves," the Campion principal told The Gleaner.
"As I told them the first year, they've already won. They've proved themselves this force to contend with in this short time. They've created an SCQ culture from nothing at Campion, so they should be very proud. As the administrator, there's no pressure. It's a game that we should enjoy. That's about it. It's not a measure of the children's academic strengths," she concluded.
TVJ General Manager Claire Grant said that Campion College would be the underdog in the final.
"They are different teams, but they also appear to be different in style, so it is going to make for a very interesting final and it is hard to really say," Grant said of the likely outcome of the match.
"What I have noticed is that teams often perform differently dependent on who they are playing. So that is one of the beauties about quiz, actually."