Two Jeopardy! Contestants with Western New York ties battle it out on the same episode


Becoming a contestant on the game show Jeopardy! Is no easy task.

“There’s an online test that 80,000 people take,” said Tonawanda resident Valerie Nolan.

But Tuesday night two people with ties to Western New York did, and on the same show.

Nolan and Cheektowaga native Jason Zuffranieri put their trivia skills to the test.

“It was exciting, great fun,” Nolan said. “There was a whole group of us because they were taping 5 shows in one day so we were all trying out the podiums and looking around and getting make up on.”

The episode that aired was taped more than two months ago. Nolan said she could use a refresher.

“I can’t remember any of it,” she said. “It was all a blur. I’m interested to see how it actually went.”

Zuffranieri now lives in New Mexico. News 4 caught up with his two brothers, Ben and Martin who were at a local restaurant watching the show.

“You know it’s really exciting,” Ben said. “It’s great to see him have success.”

To make it behind the podium, they say you need to know your trivia.

“A vast amount of absolute rubbish,” Nolan said. “And be able to bring it to the for front quickly.”

“As I like to say, our brother Jason puts the cool in nerd,” Martin said. “He’s versed in music trivia, sport trivia, science trivia.”

Only one person could advance to the next round, and it’s someone representing Western New York.

Zuffranieri won tonight’s round bringing his streak up to eight and his total earnings to $192,100.

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