O’Connor and Warren high schools will do battle on the field Friday night with two highly talented teams, but they also have successful teams off the field that battle across the state and country.
Ever wonder how much chicken the average person consumes a year? Members of the O’Connor Poultry Evaluation Team know the answer is 130 lbs.
The team knows a lot about chickens. They are headed to Kentucky for the National FFA Poultry Evaluation competition.
"It's a lot of pressure but we are going to do everything we can to win," said Austin Clay, a sophomore on the team.
The members have to judge chicken products from eggs to breaded patties, nuggets and live chickens, along with turkeys.
“They have to go through it and make sure everything is consumer-ready before it is put on the shelves," said Sarah Rodgers, a senior on the team.
Not only are they judged on how well they can judge the product, but there is also a math portion of the competition.
“The last five questions on the exam (have us) match which (items) have to do with food content or protein content,” Rodgers said. "The whole poultry contest is to train us how to evaluate the products in order to sell them.”
The O’Connor team has the won the state contest, so they have a little experience when it comes to the competition against 49 other schools.
They cannot, however, give you a definitive answer to the age-old question of which came first: the chicken or the egg?
"I hoped you wouldn't ask me that question,” Clay said.
Warren High School can brag about their own successful team: the academic decathlon team that competes as hard as any team on a field.
“It’s the competition aspect of it when we go and take tests," said Mridhul Maddela, a senior at Warren.
While the team competes in area contests, last year, Maddela and fellow senior teammate Patricia Flores were on the team that traveled to Yale University to compete against students from 28 foreign countries.
“Yale was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had in my life, " Flores said.
Each team member has to be knowledgeable about the general topic in 10 different categories like math, science, art, music, and language.
"It's not an easy thing to do, " said Maddela.