The 2012 NSC was hosted by Washington University in St. Louis, on June 9 and 10. A year after falling in the final, Hunter College High School (Lily Chen, York Chen, Richard Yu, Zihan Zheng) earned their first national title, defeating Bellarmine College Prep (Ankit Aggarwal, Nikhil Desai, Sameer Rai) 420-370 in a final that went down to the last tossup. Centennial went 5-2 in the super-playoffs to claim third, while IMSA (4-3) took fourth. Carbondale (5th) defeated Thomas Jefferson (6th) and Dorman (7th) in tiebreakers after all three finished 2-5, and Auburn (1-6) was 8th place.
The tournament’s top scorer was Adam Silverman of Centennial, at 194 PPG. He was joined on one All-Star team by Ben Chametzky (Carbondale), Daniel Brach-Neufeld (Georgetown Day), and Max Schindler (Ladue), each of whom scored at least 140 PPG. The other All-Star team was comprised of the leading scorer from the highest-finishing teams (skipping over Adam and Ben): Richard Yu (Hunter), Sameer Rai (Bellarmine), Webster Guan (IMSA), and James Bradbury (Thomas Jefferson). The latter team won 460-290.
The tournament format was essentially identical to that of 2010, though with only 60 teams, byes were substituted into four preliminary groups. After the playoffs, Hunter and Bellarmine remained unbeaten. Hunter, IMSA, Auburn, and Dorman advanced from one playoff bracket, while Bellarmine, Centennial and Carbondale qualified from the other. The last spot was contested in a three-way tiebreak. Thomas Jefferson beat St. Anselm’s 250-170, then beat Seven Lakes 230-190 to claim the last entry in the super-playoffs. Full statistics are posted at the HSQB database (http://www.hsquizbowl.org/db/tournaments/996/)
The Benjamin Cooper Award was presented jointly to Linda Greene of Rockford Auburn and David Riley of Loyola Academy. The Young Ambassador Cooper Award was presented to Lily Chen, making her the first student ever to receive a Cooper Award and win the NSC in the same year (Eric Grunden of Raleigh Charter won the 2006 Young Ambassador Award, the same year he coached his team to victory).