Mon, Apr 22, 2002

Trivia winds down
N takes the top prize

By Barbara Martin
Journal staff

The easy questions that Jim "Oz" Oliva lobbed at players in the early going of Trivia 33: All in the Contest didn't do much to help Graduates of a Lesser God's standing among the 456 participating teams.

Team members found themselves in 33rd place shortly after the 54-hour contest started Friday evening, their worst showing in 10 years, said team captain Lisa Koenigs of Milwaukee. The team plays in Stevens Point each year.

Initial questions were "way too easy," she said, resulting in a slew of teams tied for first place and difficulty for many teams in getting through to University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point radio station WWSP-FM with their correct answers.

"As soon as the big point questions started coming in, we started moving up," Koenigs said.

When all was said and done, Graduates of a Lesser God finished in third place, behind CNOF Hour 54: Bud Strikes Back! and N.

Trivia broadcasts each year on WWSP-FM, 89.9. The contest began Friday shortly after the annual Trivia Parade finished its turn around the university campus.

The contest concluded at midnight Sunday after players tried to answer 430 questions, went long stretches with little or no sleep and, by all accounts, had themselves a wonderful time.

"It was fun. We loved it," Koenigs said. "It's the best contest." Teams called in more than 85,000 correct answers, which Oliva said is a contest best.

"The teams are larger in size," he said. "If they're large in size, they can stay up longer."

There were a few glitches along the way. Contest organizers threw out nine questions - two of them because the DJs didn't allow enough time to elapse before closing down the phones and the others because Trivia gurus didn't have the correct answers, according to Oliva and fellow organizer John Eckendorf.

Shortly after midnight, the top 10 teams and the team that finished 33rd, Dads Computers: All in the Family Feud - in honor of the 33rd edition of the contest - were invited to the annual awards ceremony that follows each Trivia contest. Although the top 10 finishers knew they had broken into the upper ranks, they were not told how their teams placed until the winners were announced at the ceremony.

Next year's contest will be held April 11, 12 and 13.

Martin can be reached at 344-6100, Ext. 2517, or at barbara.martin@cwnews.net.