High school student from Edison, NJ wins teen Jeopardy tournament

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Sandra Bookman speaks to the young champion. (WABC)

He's just 17-years old and the winner of $75,000 in the "Jeopardy" teen tournament. And this smart high school senior is from our area: Edison, N.J.

It was a moment Jeff Xie says he's been dreaming about for much of his not so long life: the chance to compete on "Jeopardy".

"Ever since I watched when Ken Jennings was on, I always wanted to be on and once I was old enough to be on teen 'Jeopardy,' I immediately took the chance to audition," Xie said.

And he took full advantage of the opportunity to become one of the 15 contestants from across the country who qualified for the quiz show's teen competition. Though the episodes were taped back in March, they just aired last week.

So Xie had to keep the big secret for more than four months.

"It was a long time. I kept always wanting to tell them, even that how well I did," he said.

Finally last Friday evening on national TV, Xie realized his dream beyond even his imagination. But not before a tense, unusual tie-breaker.

In the end, the rising senior from John P. Stevens High School says his knowledge of history helped him take home the crown and the cash.

"It feels great. It feels wonderful to be part of a very small group of Jeopardy champions over the years. I feel honored," Xie said.

Xie says he'll use his winnings for travel and college. In fact, he's spending the summer interning at Columbia University, with a keen eye on the future.

"What I really want to be is attend this wonderful university, Columbia. I want to study astrophysics over there, be a Ph.D.," Xie said.

That's right: a rocket scientist. What else?

Related Topics:
societyjeopardyteenagernew jersey newsEdison
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