Centennial (IL)

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Centennial (1).png
Champaign, Illinois
Club Presidents Sophia Stuart
Coaches Andrew Cheun and Skyler Dodson
State Championships None
National Championships None
National Appearances NSC: 2011
HSNCT: 2012
Program Status Active
School Size 1376 students (As of 2023), 16 Active Players on Varsity and JV Teams combined
NAQT Page link

Centennial High School, or Champaign Centennial, is a high school in Champaign, Illinois. Centennial's quiz bowl team has gone to win many tournaments since its creation in 2009. The team was founded and coached by James Garcia from 2009 to 2014. The school ended up becoming one of the strongest teams in Central Illinois and recognized for their strength during that time period. After Garcia moved to Wisconsin in 2014, Mike Sorice replaced him as main coach. Matthew Jodino was the assistant coach for a few years until he was replaced by Andrew Cheun in the 2017-2018 season. Cheun became the main coach for the 2020-2021 season, after Sorice left to teach at Rantoul High School. Emma Delgado temporarily filled the position of assistant coach during the 2021-2022 season. Skyler Dodson filled the assistant coach position during the 2022-2023 season.



The inaugural season of Centennial Quiz Bowl began with great success. The team attended a number of difficult events without knowing that the tournaments were for experienced and dominant teams. Some embarrassing losses occurred at the hands of DCC, and Carbondale. After failing to grab any meaningful victories in the first half of the season, the underclassmen attended Davey v Goliath at Loyola and went 9-1 impressing all suburban coaches who didn't even know the team existed at that point. The team then won the IHSSBCA Turnabout tournament and obtained a ridiculous drag-racing type of trophy that dominates the trophy case in Centennial High School to this day. After failing to win Masonic Sectionals and running into Chatham Glenwood a few times, the team lost in the first game of IHSA Regionals to rival Champaign Central Despite no postseason, the team began a successful season that would be continued in further seasons.


The season held much promise and was the first of two seasons anchored by Elliot Campos, Rick Sheahan, Chris Olsen, Arun Doogar and Tyler Knoblett. With senior captain Michael Olmsted, this team was the first to go to State, both at the NAQT, Masonic, and IHSA levels. The team took second at IHSSBCA Kickoff and then did well in the second half of the season despite not coming out in first place during those tournaments. By the time the team reached the IHSA State series, they were in great shape and carried that momentum to a first round victory over Lyons Township by 9 points before losing handily to both Stevenson and IMSA, the eventual 3rd and 1st place teams. In June the team went to Northwestern to play at PACE NSC finishing 51st in the nation facing stiff competition.


Though a short history, the next season was the most successful of all Centennial Quiz Bowl teams thus far. Made up of Chris Olsen, Elliot Campos, Arun Doogar, Tyler Knoblett, and Rick Sheahan this team went very far. Starting the season with an impressive performance at UIUC Earlybird, the team took Kickoff by storm going unbeaten and proving themselves again in the Big 12 Tournament. After finishing with both first and second place at History Bowl, the team ran into some roadblocks at tough tournaments like New Trier Varsity, IMSAnity, and Springfield's Giant Tournament where they placed among the best teams, often in the top 4, but lacked the ability to overcome Macomb and Carbondale's hold on downstate dominance. After repeat-winning Masonic Sectionals the team placed 8th at NAQT State with an impressive win over Andrew Wang and New Trier. Centennial upset Chicago Latin at Masonic State to finish in the 5th-6th place range and then cruised through IHSA Regionals and Sectionals. At the State tournament the team played eventual 2nd place Macomb down to the last question after making a couple errors on "Luncheon on the Grass" among others. The team then fell to Buffalo Grove and Carbondale to end the State series at 0-3. The aforementioned top 5 players all went to HSNCT in Atlanta on the funds raised from their sweet trivia night. At HSNCT the team played #4 nationally ranked team Dorman A to the last question without knowing which team they were and hobbled to a disappointing 5-5 record, just missing the playoffs. After finishing among the top teams in the state, ranked nationally, and being the best team in the area, Chris Olsen was named to the All-State team for a third and final time.


Following the previous year's success and the departure of 4/5 of the Varsity team, expectations weren't incredibly high for the team. However, despite a sluggish performances early on at UIUC Earlybird and Kickoff, this team rebounded to play well at New Trier Varsity, IMSAnity, the Novice tournament, History Bee and Bowl, Springfield's Giant Tournament, and NAQT State. One of the main reasons for this success was the arrival of Mike Sorice as a Centennial coach. Arun Doogar led the team to Masonic State over rivals Champaign Central and Mahomet-Seymour at Masonic Sectionals (for a third time), but decided to ditch Masonic State to take a group of seniors to the Homewood-Flossmoor Tournament. Near the end of this season the team housewrote a trash tournament called CATS LOL which was a bunch of half-packets or pop culture questions. Despite winning IHSA Regionals after overcoming some terrible moderators and White Castle, they fell short to perpetual rival Bloomington during the IHSA Sectionals tournament. One of the highlights of the season was seeing Arun Doogar selected to the All-State team, who is the most recent Centennial player to achieve it.


Major losses of players and Coach Garcia led to the expectations of the team not being able to return to its former successful seasons. The arrival of Mike Sorice as head coach was able to rebound the team back to decent success and prevent the team's downfall. The team was able to improve significantly during the 2018-2019 season by winning the Kickoff and Big 12 Conference Tournament. After disappointing results in UIUC Earlybird, ACF Fall, WUFAT IV, NAQT State, expectations for the team to return to their glory days were low. The team improving significantly in Scobol Solo, Masonic Sectionals and winning IHSA Regional comfortably has given a chance for the team to continue to strengthen. Low expectations of this would be soon be repeated in the 2019-2020 season where 3/4 of the Varsity team had departed and lower decent results were acquired in the tournaments. The 2019-2020 season was unfortunately cut short because of COVID-19. Sorice departed in order to teach at Rantoul. Andrew Cheun was promoted, leaving the JV coach position vacant. The team was limited from playing tournaments in the 2020-2021 season due to the school district's policy against Discord.


After a season hiatus, the team's performance was rebuilt through a team that had one of the strongest performances in the school's history. The A team comprised of strongly improved generalist Jisoo Park, science specialist Jion Park, history, geography and religion specialist Yusuf Jassim, and newcomer Sophia Stuart whose mythology and literature depth was impressive for a freshman. Jisoo narrowly missed moving onto the finals of Scobol Solo after losing his final game, making him the closest player in reaching the tournament's final. The team placed 2nd at their hosted kickoff, losing two tough games to University of Illinois Lab. The shorthanded team placed 5th at the Standard Division of Reinstein Varsity, making it their best position at this tournament. The team placed 3rd at Masonic Sectionals, losing to Uni and Springfield, repeating their position from the last iteration. The school hosted the 2022 NAQT State Championship for the first time, where the team placed 12th after rough games. The team narrowly lost to Bloomington at their hosted-regional site, repeating another loss.


After the loss of All-State student Jisoo Park and All-Sectional student Jion Park, there were many questions about how Centennial would perform in this season. However, led by team captain Yusuf Jassim, and a strong freshman year from Sophia Stuart, there was still much to be excited about. What they did not expect was a strong, first-time performance from sophomore Alyssa McCleary, who helped lead the A team to a strong 2nd place finish with a deep knowledge in multiple topics like history, geography, and literature, losing only twice to University of Illinois Lab (a repeat of the previous season). This 2nd place finish set the tone for the rest of the season. Centennial finished 3rd at the Athens F/S, advanced to the Championship playoff pool at the IHSSBCA Turnabout @ Lincoln HS, 2nd place at the Mattoon F/S, 3rd place in the Standard Division of the Railer Rumble, and 3rd place at Masonic Sectionals. Unfortunately, the season was ended as they lost a tight match against their crosstown rivals, Champaign Central, during the IHSA Regionals.


After our lone senior and former team captain, Yusuf Jassim, graduated, Centennial was left with a very young, but promising team. Led by team captain Sophia Stuart and junior Alyssa McCleary, there was much excitement in seeing how the season would play out. The new school year also brought in a new wave of 13 freshmen, some of whom have made a big impact on the Varsity team. Some of the notable accomplishments for this year's team include a 4th place finish at the IHSSBCA Novice tournament, a 2nd place finish at the IHSSBCA Kickoff tournament (losing to University of Illinois Lab), 2nd place finish at Athens F/S (losing to Pleasant Plains), 1st place at the EIU Pine Honors College tournament, 1st place at the Railer Rumble Standard Division, and 3rd place at Masonic Sectionals. Unfortunately, the season ended in a similar fashion to last year, losing to their crosstown rivals, Champaign Central, during the IHSA Regionals.

Notable Alumni

  • Elliot Campos (2012)
  • Samuel Hall (2012)
  • Tyler Knoblett (2012)
  • Chris Olsen (2012)
  • Rick Sheahan (2012)
  • Arun Doogar (2013)
  • David Fisher (2014)
  • Jarret Leuck (2016)
  • Patrick Minsker (2016)
  • Daniel Olsen (2016)
  • Daniel Lee (2017) (Transferred to IMSA)
  • Aaditya Mehta (2017)
  • Brett Hancock (2019)
  • Amy Paul (2019)
  • Henry Moore (2020)
  • Nick Maurer (2021)
  • Jion Park (2022)
  • Jisoo Park (2022)
  • Yusuf Jassim (2023)

Individual Awards

IHSSBCA All-Sectional Honorees

  • 2009-2010: Chris Olsen Class AA
  • 2010-2011: Arun Doogar Class AA
  • 2010-2011: Chris Olsen Class AA
  • 2011-2012: Elliot Campos Class AA
  • 2011-2012: Arun Doogar Class AA
  • 2011-2012: Chris Olsen Class AA
  • 2012-2013: Arun Doogar Class AA
  • 2013-2014: David Fischer Class AA
  • 2014-2015: Jarrett Leuck Class AA
  • 2014-2015: Patrick Minsker Class AA
  • 2014-2015: Daniel Olsen Class AA
  • 2014-2015: Jarrett Leuck Class AA (Honorable Mention)
  • 2015-2016: Patrick Minsker Class AA
  • 2015-2016: Daniel Olsen Class AA
  • 2016-2017: Aaditya Mehta Class AA
  • 2017-2018: Brett Hancock Class AA (Honorable Mention)
  • 2017-2018: Amy Paul Class AA
  • 2018-2019: Amy Paul Class AA
  • 2019-2020: Nick Maurer Class AA
  • 2019-2020: Henry Moore Class AA
  • 2019-2020: Jisoo Park Class AA (Honorable Mention)
  • 2021-2022: Yusuf Jassim Class AA
  • 2021-2022: Jion Park Class AA
  • 2021-2022: Jisoo Park Class AA
  • 2022-2023: Yusuf Jassim Class AA
  • 2022-2023: Alyssa McCleary Class AA
  • 2022-2023: Sophia Stuart Class AA
  • 2023-2024: Alyssa McCleary Class AA
  • 2023-2024: Sophia Stuart Class AA

IHSSBCA All-State Honorees

  • 2009-2010: Chris Olsen (Second Team) Class AA
  • 2010-2011: Chris Olsen (Second Team) Class AA
  • 2011-2012: Chris Olsen (Second Team) Class AA
  • 2012-2013: Arun Doogar (Second Team) Class AA
  • 2021-2022: Jisoo Park (Second Team) Class AA

External Link