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‘Jeopardy!’ contestants tie, forcing rare sudden death clue

Posted at 9:16 PM, Mar 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-01 21:16:34-05

A contestant’s incorrect guess left her in a situation rarely seen on “Jeopardy!” – a tie.

Laura McLean, a data analyst from Nashville, was on her way to victory when she stumbled on a European Islands clue and lost $8,201, leaving her with the same amount as her opponent, Minnesotan Sarah Norris, a technical writer and manager.

Without missing a beat, Alex Trebek announced the tiebreaker category, “Way Back in 2017,” and the clue, “Her April decision to call a snap parliamentary election proved less than brilliant on June 8.”

McLean answered correctly – Theresa May – and won the tiebreaker, leaving her with a cumulative $19,598.

The tiebreaker category, which decides the game but doesn’t have any monetary value, was instituted in November 2014 to avoid ties in regular game play. The tiebreaker is a longtime rule in tournaments.

The first contestant to buzz in and correctly answer wins, and if no one guesses right the host keeps asking questions until a winner is declared.

The last tie happened in 2014 during this Teen Tournament: