Archived radio high school quiz programs

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17-08 News – Firelands vs. Olmsted Falls

FOR RELEASE: MAR. 21, 2017 3/19/17 CONTACT: Jim Mehrling (



The Scholastic Games radio quiz, heard weekly on WEOL (AM 930), presented two solid academic teams schools this week, a highly competitive event that resulted in the second highest winning score of the year. It was a 410-300 win for Olmsted Falls High. Meanwhile, Firelands earned the second highest losing score of the year, earning a second chance at the playoffs as a wildcard team. This was the last program of the season’s first round of competitions, determining all area teams eligible for playoff competition, which are listed in the program schedule below.

McCafferty, left, is congratulated by program host Jim Mehrling

McCafferty, left, is congratulated by program host Jim Mehrling

The winning Olmsted Falls team consisted of Joey Calabrase, Ben Meredyk, and team captain Molly McCafferty, who earned the program’s “Standout Scholar Award,” a weekly $50 prize given to the student judged to have contributed the most to his or her team. Representing Firelands were Michael Durdak, Sam Formholtz and team captain Ryan Martin.

Olmsted Falls ended the first round with a maximum 60-point score, including a “plus points” question by luck of the draw, gaining an early 20-point lead. Firelands, however, outscored them in a difficult Current Events round to tie the score. Buzzers come into play in the third round, giving an advantage to the quicker team, and with a theme of Chief Justices of the Supreme Court, Olmsted Falls bounced back to a 130 to 110 lead.

The fourth round involves multiple clues; a correct answer to the first clue yields fifty points and the final clue, if required, provides only ten. Intermediate clues provide scoring possibilities in between. McCafferty scored on three of the five items, 40 points for naming novelist Sinclair Lewis after the mention of Arrowsmith, 30 points for naming Harriet Tubman, plus a 10 point score. The other two items incuded 50 points for Firelands when Formholtz identified Archimedes after a mention of hydrostatics in the first clue. Then Martin earned Firelands 30 more points from clues about Panama. The teams entered the highest-scoring final round with a 210 to 190 Olmsted Falls lead. With McCafferty’s lead the Falls team scored twice the points of their opponents to secure a solid win.

The teams are guided by faculty advisors. Erin Stanton is the advisor for Olmsted Falls High School and Kelly Miller advises the Firelands team. Continuing a 26-year tradition, each participating school will receive a $1000 tuition credit to be given to a deserving student that will attend an area college or university. Many additional credits are awarded to schools as they compete and win in playoffs. Contributing institutions include Lorain County Community, Baldwin Wallace University, Ohio Wesleyan, Oberlin College, Ursuline College, Ashland University, Case Western Reserve, Heidelberg, John Carroll, Notre Dame College of Ohio, and Tiffin University, many of which have participated in this program for a number of years.

Sixteen of Lorain County’s public and private high schools have now competed, will playoffs to follow. The program, sponsored by the Educational Service Center of Lorain County with foundation support, will continue to be heard most Monday evenings (6:05 to 7 p.m.) with two schools in competition each week. The schedule of broadcasts is below.



TUESDAYS, 6:06 p.m. (except when sports games delay the quiz to Tuesday, same time)

3/27 First Quarterfinal – high-scoring winning teams return: Amherst vs. Midview

4/3 Qualifying Playoff: Brookside vs. Keystone (winning team advances to quarterfinals)

4/10 “Wildcard” playoff: highest-scoring runner-ups: Avon Lake vs. Firelands

(the winning team advances to quarterfinals)

4/17 Second Quarterfinal – Avon vs. one of the above winning teams

4/24 Third Quarterfinal – Olmsted Falls vs. one of the above winning teams

5/1   Fourth Quarterfinal – Vermilion vs. Lake Ridge Academy

5/8-22 Semifinals and Championship

 Scholastic Games, on WEOL radio since 1990, is presented on the station by the Elyria Public Library System. Production of the program is made possible by funding from Nordson Corporation, the Nord Family Foundation, the Community West Foundation, and the following funds administered by the Community Foundation of Lorain County: the William J. and Flora Hearn Durling Fund, the Dorothy and Elizabeth King Memorial Charitable Fund, and the Miraldi and Barrett Fund. The Elyria Public Library System and the Elyria Days Inn provide recording venues, and following broadcast, and offer the programs as “podcasts.”

A member of the Broadcasters Hall of Fame of Akron and Cleveland, the program’s producer, Jim Mehrling, is a veteran northeast Ohio broadcaster. After seven years as Chief Announcer at WEOL, he was Production Manager at Cleveland’s WERE-AM for over a decade, and has for over twenty years been with Cleveland’s WCLV-FM, now a part of Ideastream public broadcasting. Again this year, most Scholastic Games programs will be followed by a talk feature, “Dialogues in Education,” which presents education success stories with its host, award-winning journalist Bob Tayek.



The academic team from Firelands High School, left to right, Sam Formholtz, Michael Durdak and Ryan Martin, were heard on the Scholastic Games quiz on WEOL Radio (AM 930).


The academic team from Olmsted Falls High School, left to right, Ben Meredyk, Molly McCafferty, and Joey Calabrase, were heard on the Scholastic Games quiz on WEOL Radio (AM 930).


Molly McCafferty, left, of Olmsted Falls High School, is congratulated by program producer Jim Mehrling for winning “Standout Scholar” honors on the Scholastic Games quiz program on WEOL radio (AM 930).