Area teacher places second on Jeopardy after solid performance

Justin Broughman

“What did Mr. Wrigley add to Fenway Park?”

Strasburg resident Justin Broughman, who teaches U.S. history and U.S. government at Central High School in Woodstock, answered that question correctly on his first appearance on Jeopardy.

He would end the show with $15,200, enough for second place, losing to Tom Blake, a New York video producer.

Broughman viewed his performance on Jeopardy Thursday night with about 300 students at a watch party at Central High School, he said.

“Every time I got one right they cheered like it was the Super Bowl,” Broughman said.

There was a loud collective “no” when he lost.

“We have great students, and I am fortunate to teach here,” he said in a phone interview after the show aired. He was also grateful to the group who organized the watch party.

The game features six categories for three contestants to select from. Various cash amounts are won with each correct answer.

Thursday’s show began with “Shakespeare in the Park”, “Washington D.C.” and “One ‘Day’ at a Time” among the categories.

“Shakespeare in the Park” was selected. The category, however, turned out to be about baseball parks.

He correctly answered a question and won $400 when he knew Philip Wrigley added ivy to the walls of Fenway Park.

Broughman quickly answered more questions and jumped to take the lead with $2,400.

He had a respectable showing throughout the game, even taking the lead a couple more times, such as when he correctly answered a question about free range chickens.

At final jeopardy the game was close with any contestant able to take the game.

“Who was the only actor to win three best actor Oscars, the most recent for his portrayal of a U.S. president?,” was the final question.

Broughman correctly answered Daniel Day Lewis.

He ended with $15,200.

It was not enough, however, and Broughman finished in second place, losing to Tom Blake, a New York video producer.

“I was proud of how I did. I wish I had won it all,” Broughman said. ” I tried my best.”

Only the first place winner gets to walk away with all their winnings. The second place winner keeps $2,000 and third place receives $1,000. Broughman will get the money in February. He anticipates putting it toward a vacation in Alaska.

He taped the show Aug. 3.

Broughman’s wife, who was with him at the taping, was the only other person to know before the taping how he finished.

His parents drove two hours from Clifton Forge in Alleghany County to watch the show with their son and the Central students. The Jeopardy show in their hometown was preempted by an NFL football game, Broughman said.

Broughman was named the 2017 Teacher of the Year at Central.