Pine River-Backus takes 20th in state Knowledge Bowl contest

This marks only the second year PR-B has advanced to state.

Brainerd knowledge bowl team.jpg
Brainerd's Knowledge Bowl team placed in the top 10 of the AA division.

EAST GULL LAKE — Pine River-Backus Knowledge Bowl team recently placed 20th in the state's A division.

"I would add this is only the second time in school history a PR-B team has competed at the state level (2013 being the other)," said coach Isaak Anderson.

The Pine River-Backus team included seniors Daniel Irish (spokesperson), Randall Yost (who qualified for state speech in storytelling the next day at sections) and Liam Peterson.

Sophomores Cash Kangas and Olivia Anderson were also part of the team with fellow sophomore Trinity Osman present as a pocket box operator.

This year's success was particularly exciting for Anderson, father of Olivia Anderson.


"As a father and former state competitor myself (1989 and 1991), it was pretty awesome to have my daughter compete at state," Izaak Anderson said. "We may be the first family with multiple generations competing in the Minnesota state Knowledge Bowl experience."

Brainerd High School’s Knowledge Bowl teams both placed in the top 10 in the AA division of the 2022 Minnesota Service Cooperative’s state Knowledge Bowl meet April 7-8 at Cragun’s Resort in East Gull Lake.

Brainerd Blue received medals for a sixth-place finish and Brainerd White earned ninth-place, only trailing four points behind their teammates. The sixth-place finish is the highest finish for any BHS team.

Bertha-Hewitt finished in 24th place in the A division.

Knowledge Bowl engages nearly 1,000 teams across Minnesota in academic competitions designed for students in grades 7-12. During the contest, teams of students compete in written and oral rounds by answering questions related to all areas of learning.

Questions test students’ recall, problem-solving and critical thinking skills related to the following curriculum areas: National and World Affairs, Government, American History, Health and Psychology, Art and Music Literature, Biology, Math, Current Events, Minnesota History, Earth Science, Physical Science, Economics and Law, World History, English, World Languages and Geography.

The Minnesota Service Cooperatives organization has facilitated this senior high state competition since 1979. Teams are selected from within the Minnesota Service Cooperative’s 11 regions, bringing together the top 48 teams - 24 in the AA division and 24 in the A division - for the state meet. Divisions of the two tiers is based on high school population size.

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