Community

Who is 'Jeopardy's!' next college championship contestant? This Manatee teen.

Hannah Sage, 19, stands with longtime 'Jeopardy!' host Alex Trebek. Sage, who grew up in Lakewood Ranch, was chosen to compete in the show's annual College Championship tournament.
Hannah Sage, 19, stands with longtime 'Jeopardy!' host Alex Trebek. Sage, who grew up in Lakewood Ranch, was chosen to compete in the show's annual College Championship tournament. Jeopardy Productions, Inc.

Hannah Sage is only 19, but she already has accomplished a lot.

The Lakewood Ranch native and Saint Stephen’s Episcopal School graduate is set to appear on the annual Jeopardy College Championship Tournament, airing April 9.

And while she says she can't divulge her most memorable moment on the show, not at least until it airs, she did say that getting to meet Alex Trebek was "super cool" and also called the longtime host an amazing person and "really funny."

Sage, now a mathematics major at the University of Central Florida, credits many things to her success.

Her hometown and high school are two of them.

“My education at Saint Stephen’s has given me a solid foundation of learning that I have been able to build on in college,” Sage said. “All of my teachers at Saint Stephen's were wonderful and taught me so much. I've been applying all of the knowledge and skills that I learned there in my classes at UCF.”

Sage is a National Merit Scholar and was on Saint Stephen’s Academic Team and said being on the team really helped her compete on Jeopardy! and sparked her love for trivia.

But the process of getting on the show, Sage said, is pretty daunting.

First, interested students take an online test, which is given at specific times for each tournament. Next, depending on how high they score, they may get an invitation to audition for their region of the country.

Sage's audition was in Atlanta and consisted of another written test, a mock game and an interview.

After that, Sage said, it was basically a waiting game on the callback.

"When I received my call, I was ecstatic," she said. "I've been watching Jeopardy! with my family since I was little and it has always been a dream of mine to be on the show. Being able to do this while representing my university made me even happier. "

While she isn't allowed to reveal much about the competition now, Sage did say competing was both exhilarating and stressful.

"You don't realize how quickly the questions go by until you're basically done with the round," she said, "(And) all of my competitors were amazing and talented, and also great people. Being able to play against them was a once-in-a-lifetime experience."

To see how Sage does, tune into her quarterfinal game Monday, April 9, at 7:30 p.m. on CBS. The entire tournament airs over two weeks, through Friday, April 20.

  Comments