Ben Roethlisberger turned in a stellar performance last night, going 13-16 with 5 touchdowns. But TCHS QB and Michigan recruit John Wienke has him beat: 13 for 13 with 5 touchdowns and over 260 yds.

Unfortunately, I was not able to see Big Ben’s performance, as I had my first Scholastic Bowl meet of the year. I’m the captain on our varsity team (I was also varsity captain last year), and I’m only a sophomore (that’s right, I was a freshman varsity captain last year).

This is also our first year in the OVC (we were in the LOVC), and there are some big differences:

- 10 question halves (20 total) instead of 15 question halves (30 total)
*Jeopardy!* level questions vs. *5th Grader* level questions

Which means that it’s unlikely I’ll repeat my 49 tossups from last year (in 293 questions, for a 16.7 percentage) or my 57 tossups from practice this year (in 166 questions, for a 34.4 percentage).

In our first match, my brain was stuck in freeze, forgetting the list of authors I memorized last year for literary bonuses (and these are just the Russian ones):

- Tolstoy
- Chekhov
- Dostoyevsky (or something similar)

We only trailed by five, though, with one question to go, but they got the tossup. The bonus was math (calculus), and it was something like:

Given the equation f(x) = ax^4 + bx^3 + cx^2 + d (with some numbers replacing a, b, c, and d), find:

- f` [the first derivative of f(x)]
- f“ [the second derivative]
- f“` [the third derivative]
- f““ [the fourth derivative]

They called time immediately and passed. I was able to do the first two mentally (with only the equation on my paper), but at three and four, I somehow added an x or two. We lost by 5.

But we did win the second game, although I missed three of four math questions (I was off by a factor of ten on one, and had positive infinity when it was negative infinity).

Oh, yeah: in the first match, I nailed a bonus asking for the four teams in some NHL division, except for the Chicago Blackhawks. The answers:

- St. Louis Blues
- Nashville Predators
- Columbus Blue Jackets
- Detroit Red Wings

Let me just say that all I know about hockey is this: Barry Melrose has an awesome mullet.