Belinder second grade teacher Larry Martin is one of three contestants who will have their fingers on the clicker in the Jeopardy Teachers Tournament two-day final that starts today.
Martin advanced to the semi-finals with a big win in the opening round episode that aired last Wednesday — a victory he got to watch with hundreds of Belinder students, parents and teachers backed into the school gym. The gym was full again yesterday as Martin’s fans watched him cruise to another victory, finishing the day with $25,400 to competitors Jake Allen and Katherine Saxby’s $3,600 and $200, respectively.
Here he is talking about his semifinals performance, including his confidence in some of the Double Jeopardy round categories:
With the win, Martin became one of three finalists vying for the top prize of $100,000 in the two-day championship event. He’ll face off against Lexington, Ky., Latin teacher Claire Bishop and Midvale, Utah, math teacher Steve Mond. Bishop was among the three contestants in Martin’s quarterfinals appearance. Though she lost to Martin in that round, she advanced to the semi-finals as a wild card because she was one of the two non-victor quarterfinals contestants with the highest winnings.
Of course, Martin knows how things play out — the episodes were filmed in Los Angeles March 20 and 21. But he isn’t allowed to say.
But when asked by Belinder principal Steve Yeoman after Wednesday’s show what his fans at Belinder could expect the next couple days, Martin noted that advancing to the finals was an accomplishment in itself: the victor gets $100,000, but the second and third place finishers get $50,000 and $25,000.
“So I was feeling pretty good about making it to the finals,” he told the crowd.
Day one of the Teachers Tournament finals airs today at 3:30 p.m. on KSHB (Channel 41). The contestant with the highest cumulative total after two days of play will be the champion.