Breaking: Nguyen’s ‘Jeopardy!’ run comes to an end

Madison Abbassi, Senior Staff Writer

Daniel Nguyen realizes his defeat in ‘Final Jeopardy!’ after hearing the other contestants’ correct answers of “Georgia.” Ultimately Nguyen’s $6,401 wager on “New Hampshire” struck his score down from $17,600 to $11,199. The first-place contestant, Ryan Long, finished in the lead with a final score of $18,800. (Photo: Sony Pictures Television)

The third episode of ‘Jeopardy!’ featuring Palo Alto High School math teacher Daniel Nguyen aired 7 p.m. Friday night — a tense episode where Nguyen remained firmly in the lead until a costly mistake on the final question, ending the local favorite’s run on the show.

His competitors were Ryan Long, a Rideshare driver from Pennsylvania, and Marie Shapiro, a retired school registrar from San Francisco.

The night’s questions covered a broad range of categories, challenging the contestants on everything from Shakespearean sonnets to different breeds of sporting dogs.

Throughout the entire game, Nguyen remained squarely in first place, answering 19 questions correctly.

One particularly strong moment was when Nguyen beat both Long and Shapiro on a question about a death in the 1904 opera “Madame Butterfly.”

However, things rapidly unraveled for him during ‘Final Jeopardy!’.

Nguyen entered the last round with a sizeable lead over his competitors — $17,600 to Long’s $12,000 in second place, and Shapiro’s third-place standing of $6,700.

However, Nguyen was quickly thrown off by the ‘Final Jeopardy!’ question, “This state was named for a man born in Herrenhausen Palace in Hanover in 1683.” His guess of “What is New Hampshire” was incorrect.

In a surprise upset, Long’s correct guess of “Georgia” (named for King George II) catapulted him from $12,000 to $18,800, placing him ahead of Nguyen in first place. Meanwhile, Shapiro wagered $6,000 on her “Georgia” guess, which raised her to a second-place score of $12,700.

Long was seen covering his face with his hands in shock as Nguyen smiled sheepishly at the camera.

Per ‘Jeopardy!’ rules, this marks the end of Nguyen’s run on the show, bringing him to total winnings of $26,199. However, Nguyen’s victories on Wednesday and Thursday place him ahead of the average contestant’s ‘Jeopardy!’ winning streak of 1.76 games, according to The Jeopardy! Fan, a blog that tracks statistics on the show.