L-R: Garrett Willingham, Declan Cornett, Gabe Aufderhaar, Will Parker, Kohan Lovett, Tom Parker / Photo courtesy Lee Henry
WEST POINT – Last Friday, the West Point High School scholars’ bowl team took first place honors at the Snead State Invitational Tournament, beating out highly ranked teams from Hoover and Gadsden for the win. And they team is headed to state competition and nationals!
Team coach Lee Henry was an academic “proud papa,” telling The Tribune:
“This was a really big win for us, and one that I honestly didn't expect. We were missing Billy Ellis, one of our senior starters. Gabe Aufderhaar filled in for him most of the day, but I made the decision to put sophomore Garrett Willingham in against Hoover. He made the difference for sure. We wouldn't have won that match without him.
“To be fair, Hoover was also missing some key players; but they are very deep and are definitely the best team in the state. Getting a win over them–even if they weren't at full strength–is huge for us. We were down 100-0 at one point but clawed back and won on a second tie-breaker. It was one of the best matches I've ever had the privilege of coaching.
“In the championship match against Gadsden City, it came down to the very last question. Senior Captain Will Parker managed to answer a math computation question insanely fast to solidify the win.”
The WPHS team is undefeated this semester, winning the Covenant Christian Invitational in Huntsville and Cullman County Championship in January, the Alabama Scholastic Competition Association (ASCA) District Tournament in February, and the Snead State Invitational last week. Next week, the team will head to the ASCA State Championship Tournament, where it hopes to claim its third straight 5A state title. After that, the team will compete in the Small School National Championship Tournament, April 26-29 in Chicago.
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