• Bob Vlach, Woodford Sun Staff

WCHS students advance to state in quick-recall, written assessment

Woodford County High School's quick-recall team advanced to the state Governor's Cup finals for a third consecutive year after finishing in second place behind Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Region 11. "Finishing second in the region is huge," WCHS academic team Coach April York said. "Dunbar is a multi-time state champion. They are a very good team." The WCHS Brain Jackets defeated Dunbar by a substantial margin in their first quick-recall match at the state finals before losing by very narrow margins in subsequent head-to-head games, including a 31 to 30 defeat in their final contest. Three WCHS students advanced to the state Governor's Cup finals in written assessment with top-five placements in six different subject areas - helping the Brain Jackets earn 22.5 points and a second-place overall finish in the Region 11 Cup finals, which was won by Dunbar. "They're not thinking about individual accomplishment as much as they are team accomplishment," said York. ".As a byproduct, they have individual accomplishments as well." WCHS junior Seth Allen earned first-place honors in social studies, and arts and humanities. "It's always fun to qualify for state and it's fun to go to state," he said. WCHS senior Ryan Mink finished tied for fifth in science and fourth in mathematics to advance to the state finals in both. "Given (the stiff competition in) our region, qualifying in math and qualifying in science are both great accomplishments," said York. She said math and science qualifiers out of Region 11 will finish top-10 in the state finals. WCHS junior Sarah Potts advanced to the state finals with a first-place finish in language arts. She attributes her success to "just a lot of studying," but her coach went further. "She has an incredible body of knowledge," said York. ". She is humble, but still competitive." Seth attributes his team's recent successes in Governor's Cup matches to the valuable experience gained while playing against very competitive teams in academic tournaments in Kentucky and elsewhere. Facing much larger teams from bigger cities allows WCHS to have successes against an in-state academic powerhouse like Lexington's Dunbar High School, he said. Last year, Woodford County High School's quick-recall team advanced to the state finals after finishing first in Region 11, while Dunbar did not go to state. WCHS also defeated the academic powerhouse from Lexington in last year's NAQT finals, York said. "The upperclassmen have worked to really create a culture of 'We're a team that studies outside of practice. We're a team that takes this seriously. We have goals,'" she said.

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