I was a member of the Reach for the Top team that won the Ontario provincial championships. There, I bragged about it. For those of you who don’t know, reach for the top is a Canadian high school quiz series, where the top teams face off in a TV series. Back in the year 1990, the world was a different place, and Wade McElwain was a different young man.
I was in grade 12, and our Waterloo Oxford DSS Crusader Reach team were the heavy underdogs in the provincial championship contest held in London, Ontario. Luckily our team had just frantically finished first in our regional finals which allowed us in to the big show. We had just played 12 solid games on TV for the regionals, so we were pretty pumped by the time the provincial finals were on.
We had heard through the Reach vine that several Toronto teams had blasted through opposition with ease. We witnessed this team from Woburn Collegiate absolutely devastate a team in an earlier contest and we were pretty scared. The farm boys from Baden were in for a rough ride in this one.
Fortunately our early battle of games had us hardened for the early games, which we blew through with ease. I remember in particular hitting a hot streak against a team from Forest that gave me 160 points in the game and an even bigger lead against our shocked opponents. We were ready to rock.
The quarter finals brought us a fearful team of private schoolers from Toronto whose captain was some sweater wearing savante who blistered on the buzzer with correct answers a fury. Thankfully we had our own autistic wonder in Craig, who got wrecked by nerves so much he yanked a corner off his own hair from twitched twisting.
The snobs were defeated in an epic fashion, which left us the team…from Woburn Collegiate.
We won the Provincials, only to lose by a mere 5 points to Newfoundland in the finals. Sadly the last 3 rounds of ‘Famous Canadian Females’ seemed to favour the Newfie team who had 3 smart ladies on their roster. Our huge lead was gone, and so was the national title. It worked out enough, I got a scholarship to Western University out of it, and met a few future girlfriends.
I still keep in touch with Matt Becker but haven’t heard from Craig or Jason in decades. Hope you’re well lads.