first_imgThe award ceremony at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott Hotel proved to be a nail-biter right down to the end as medals and trophies were handed out. As a team, Moorpark scored highest on the Super Quiz Relay portion of the competition held Saturday, mastering questions on climatology. North Hollywood High School came in fourth on the Super Quiz, with senior Jasmine Florentine proving to be the most worthy single opponent in the competition. She took home nine medals, a scholarship of $1,500 and bragging rights for earning 8,946 points out of a possible 9,000 – the most for any student. “It’s really emotional for me and for all of us,” Florentine said. El Camino won the national title in 1998, 2001, 2004 and 2005. El Camino Real High School narrowly beat two local challengers Sunday to win the state’s Academic Decathlon, putting the Woodland Hills team within reach of a fifth national title. The eight-member El Camino team scraped past Granada Hills Charter by just 210 points, clinching California’s title with a total of 50,486 points out of a possible 60,000. Ventura County’s Moorpark High School came in third with a total of 49,584 points. “We were under the radar for the whole season, which allowed us to stay focused,” said El Camino coach Lissa Gregorio. “I couldn’t be more proud of them.” As it did in 2005, El Camino entered the competition this year as a “wild card” team after coming in second to Granada Hills Charter at the Los Angeles Unified School District regional competition last month. “Knowing that we had lost to Granada Hills in the city competition really scared us going in,” said Venus Vakhshori of El Camino. “Their win had humbled us,” agreed Jennifer Yoo, 18, also of El Camino. “It made us work harder. There were times when we yelled at each other to study harder.” Sunday’s defeat was a difficult one for the close-knit Granada Hills team and for coach Nicholas Weber. “We worked so hard since June, but we lost by just 10 questions,” Weber said as he comforted his tearful team. “It will take a few days for them to adjust.” Victor El Camino will compete at the national competition next month in Honolulu. Team members are Vakhshori, 17, Yoo, 18, Shengya Cao, 17, Helen Durand, 17, Sam Farahmand, 16, Jiyoung Kim, 17, and Frank Soberanis, 17. California has won 13 of 25 national championships, with nine of those brought home by LAUSD teams. Last year, Taft High School of Woodland Hills won its third national championship. Taft also won in 1989 and 1994. The Academic Decathlon consists of multiple-choice tests in art, economics, language and literature, mathematics, music and science, as well as the Super Quiz oral relay and written contests, interviews, speech and essay competitions. Although teams can compete with as few as six students, each typically has nine: three with grade-point averages of 3.75 to 4.00; three with GPAs of 3.00 to 3.74; and three with GPAs below 3.00. [email protected] (818) 713-3664 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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