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Texas students win regional National Science Bowl competition, secure spot in finals in nation's capital

NPO’s Mark Padilla congratulates the winning Amarillo High School Team Black with their victory at the Pantex Science Bowl 2016.

More than 200 students from 37 from High schools across the Texas Panhandle gathered together with a few hundred volunteers for a meeting and competition of the minds: The Pantex Science Bowl 2016.

Set up like a game show with buzzers, toss up and bonus questions, these groups of four students with one substitute, were challenged by the questions and their counterparts at the Pantex High School Science Bowl at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas.

Each round consisted of teams going head-to-head with a moderator, timekeeper, rules judge and science judge in case questions and answers were challenged. Those questions were based on subjects from life science, physical science, earth and space science, energy and mathematics … and these questions were designed to test the brightest and smartest with five-second time limit on the toss-up questions and 20 seconds for bonus questions. All in all, a very serious competition based in the world of science and math.

Amarillo High School's Team Black took first place, winning $1,000 for their science department and an all-expenses paid trip to Washington, D.C. and the national competition April 28-May 2.

Lubbock High School's Team Gold earned $500 for their school with their second place finish and Randall High School's Team Black placed third, earning $250.

Pantex, which had about 200 volunteers staffing the event over two Saturdays at the middle and high school competitions, has sponsored the regional competitions for 24 years with a goal to educate students.