NIU Rockford — The Auburn Stateline Quiz Bowl team built an early lead in the ‘Bergstrom Stateline Quiz Bowl’ final, and despite a late flurry by the Belvidere North team, never looked back.  They won by a score of 360-290 to make history as the first ever Quiz Bowl winner in a contest televised live Friday night on WTVO-17.

The victory earns the team a very large trophy and $40,000 in scholarship money at NIU of which any unused portion will roll over into next year’s tournament sic.  “We’re so proud of these students,” NIU President Doug Baker said during the trophy presentations.  “These students through this whole series have shown what great students we have in the area and we want to really keep them in the area.”  NIU also offered $8000 in scholarships to Belvidere North for finishing second.

Echoing Baker’s comments, the theme throughout both the pre-game and post-game programs was the need for the region to keep more home-grown talent home, and the contribution the Stateline Quiz Bowl could have on that effort.

“Let’s show off the talent we have here,” Bergstrom Board Chairman Dave Rydell said during a pre-game taped interview with ‘Eyewitness News’ anchor Mimi Murphy.  That’s why they have announced a commitment to sponsoring the ‘Bergstrom Stateline Quiz Bowl’ for three more years.  “The Quiz Bowl has gone so well and we’ve received so many positive comments that we’ve decided to sign up for three more years.  So a lot of students in the Rock River Valley will be able to participate in the future and we’re happy about that.”  The winning team also received invitations to two paid internships at Bergstrom over the summer.

Hosted by ‘Eyewitness News’ anchor Nick Toma, the rapid-fire quiz program is also being expanded to a full 32-team bracket format beginning in October.