Who won Jeopardy! tonight? Friday, May 19, 2023

Three players from the May 19 episode
Three players from the May 19 episode (Image via Jeopardy)

A brand new episode of Jeopardy! Season 39 aired on Friday, May 19, 2023, featuring the returning player Ben Chan and two new contestants. The philosophy professor from Green Bay, Wisconsin, had won seven games before the latest episode and banked $213,000. With these many wins, he has qualified for the Tournament of Champions.

The official synopsis of the Emmy-winning game show reads:

“A returning champion and two challengers test their buzzer skills and their knowledge in a wide range of academic and popular categories.”

Ben Chan returned to Friday’s episode to play against two newcomers — Erica Johnson, a stay-at-home mom from Greenbelt, Maryland, and Chris Hammer, a teacher from McKinney, Texas. The new players tried their level best to compete against the seven-day winner Ben.


Today’s Jeopardy! winner is Ben Chan

Ben Chan initially won three games in April but due to some travel issue, he couldn’t continue playing at the time. He returned to the Alex Trebek stage in the May 15 episode and since then became unstoppable.

In the latest episode, the categories for the first round included:

“Some Of The 10 Commandments, On A First-Name Basis With Booze, Hurray For Hollywood!, Those Balls Have “I”S, Multiple Meanings, Gates.”

Today’s game started slow but Ben soon picked up the pace, so did the new players. The returning champion gave 14 correct answers, along with one wrong answer. He was leading in the game because Erica Johnson gave six correct responses and Chris Hammer delivered five correct and two incorrect answers.

The scores of the first round were Ben at $10,400, Erica at $3,600, and Chris at $1,400.

Hosted by Mayim Bialik, the May 19 episode’s categories for the second round included “Sweet 1616, Literary Mismatches, The Human Body, Hip-Hop Names, Anagrams, Gaits.”

Viewers were concerned when Ben lost $10,000 combined in both Daily Doubles. Fortunately, his knowledge in the Hip-Hop Names category saved him from losing his top spot on the scoreboard. While he led the round, Erica and Chris were still struggling to bring in scores in the Double Jeopardy round.

The earnings of the players in the second round were Ben at $12,400, Erica at $4,800, and Chris at $3,400.

In the Final Jeopardy round, all three players gave the correct answer to the final question. As Ben was already leading with a big difference in scores, his position was secured. Chris and Erica almost went all in while wagering in the final round, therefore, their ranks too remained the same.

Hence, Ben Chan won Jeopardy! today.

Ben Chan: Tonight's winner (Image via Jeopardy)
Ben Chan: Tonight's winner (Image via Jeopardy)

Final Jeopardy! results today

The final round’s question of the May 19 episode was under the category of USA. The clue read:

“People going north on this route say they’re traveling “GAME”, an acronym regarding their beginning & ending points.”

The correct answer to the question was “Appalachian Trail.”

All three contestants gave the correct response and won their respective wagering money. Take a look at the results of the May 19 episode:

Ben Chan: $12,400 + $2,400 = $14,800 (What is the Appalachian Trail?) (8-day total: $227,800)

Erica Johnson: $4,800 + $4,800 = $9,600 (What is the Appalachin Trail?)

Chris Hammer: $3,400 + $3,299 = $6,699 (What is the Appalachian Trail?)

With today’s win, Ben became the 8-day champion of season 39. Interestingly, when he returned to the Alex Trebek stage, he bagged his winning position by defeating another 8-day champion, Hannah Wilson.

Meanwhile, Ben will defend his win once again in his ninth game, which will be held in the next week’s episode. Jeopardy! Season 39 will return with a brand new episode on Monday, May 22, 2023.

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Edited by Sushmita Sen