Uni journalism team wins IHSA state championship
Published: Monday, May 4, 2009 - 4:28pm
CHARLESTON — Uni now has two IHSA state champion teams this year.
Chess set the standard in February with a state title. On Friday, journalism followed suit.
By winning sports writing for the second straight year, Yoder became only the second student to repeat as champion in one of the contest's 15 individual events. Tim Kennedy of Arlington Heights Hersey won titles in review writing in 2006 and 2007.
Uni won the team championship by scoring 23 points in six events; only one other school, Naperville Central, placed in as many events as Uni did.
Seventy-eight schools participated in the state meet after advancing from sectionals on April 25. As with the IHSA state chess tournament, there were no divisions according to enrollment; all schools competed against each other regardless of size.
The tournament, now in its fourth year, consists of onsite events ranging from news writing and yearbook layout to feature photography and info graphics. Students have 90 minutes to complete their assignments; the results are judged the same day by a panel of judges consisting of professional journalists and academics.
The IHSA gives medals to students who place in the top six in each event. The team-scoring system is based on six points for a first-place finish, five points for second place and so on, down to one point for sixth place. About 21 state qualifiers competed in each event.
The following Uni team members won medals:
- Chris Yoder (jr), 1st place, sports writing (6 pts), 5th place, editorial writing (2 pts)
- Isaac Chambers (sr), 2nd place, feature photography (5 pts)
- Diana Liu (jr), 2nd place, copy editing (5 pts)
- Jason He (sr), 4th place, headline writing (3 pts)
- Adam Tiouririne (sr), 5th place, info graphics (2 pts)
Ten Uni students competed at the state meet:
- Isaac Chambers (sr), feature photography
- Mario Gao (jr), yearbook copy writing
- Jason He (sr), headline writing
- Adam Joseph (so), newspaper design
- Diana Liu (jr), copy editing
- Linda Ly (jr), yearbook layout: double-page spread
- Lauren Piester (sr), review writing
- Lor Sligar (sr), advertising
- Adam Tiouririne (sr), info graphics
- Chris Yoder (jr), editorial writing, sports writing
In 2008, Uni placed second at the state meet, behind Palatine Fremd. Here is this year's top 10:
- 1. UNI HIGH, 23
- 2. Prospect, 20
- 2. Rolling Meadows, 20
- 4. Edwardsville, 19
- 5. Huntley, 17
- 6. Naperville Central, 13
- 6. Glenview Glenbrook South, 13
- 6. Fithian Oakwood, 13
- 6. Mattoon, 13
- 10. O'Fallon, 11
- 10. Wheeling, 11
- 10. Palatine Fremd, 11
By winning the title, Uni joined Naperville Central as one of only two schools to have placed in the top three more than once since the state meet began in 2006. Naperville Central shared the championship with Winnetka New Trier in 2006 and placed third in 2007 and 2008.
In addition, three other students competed for Uni at this year's sectional meet, which took place six days earlier at Gregory Hall on the University of Illinois campus: Danny Ge (jr), feature writing; Natsuki Nakamura (sr), yearbook theme development (with Adam Joseph); and Gordon Ruan (sr), news writing.
Uni won the sectional championship with 66 points and six first-place awards. It was the school's third sectional title in four years. The following students earned state-qualifying medals for their sectional performances:
- Chris Yoder (jr), 1st place, editorial writing; 1st place, sports writing
- Isaac Chambers (sr), 1st place, feature photography
- Linda Ly (jr), 1st place, yearbook layout: double-page spread
- Lor Sligar (sr), 1st place, advertising
- Adam Tiouririne (sr), 1st place, info graphics
- Jason He (sr), 2nd place, headline writing
- Diana Liu (jr), 2nd place, copy editing
- Mario Gao (jr), 3rd place, yearbook copy writing
- Adam Joseph (so), 3rd place, newspaper design
- Lauren Piester (sr), 3rd place, review writing
"This was a tremendous accomplishment by the students, and I'm delighted for them," said Gargoyle adviser and team coach David Porreca. "This is a remarkably difficult contest. Your work really has to stand out to impress the judges. Moreover it takes real courage to put your work out there to be judged and critiqued. Every student from every school at sectionals and state deserves to be congratulated."