The 12 scholars’ bowl teams that advanced to the Class 1A-Division 1 state tournament Saturday were divided into two pools with the top three from each pool getting to play in a championship round.
The Goessel High School Bluebirds team went 3-2 in pool play, which placed them in a nerve wracking four-way tie for first place. The tiebreaker rules came into play, and Goessel was determined to be first in their pool.
In the championship rounds, the Bluebirds lost the first three matches to Bucklin, Central Burden, and Satanta. In the fourth match, Goessel came from behind to win against Montezuma-South Gray, 30-20, and then came from behind to beat Centre 50-40 by correctly answering four of the last five questions.
“It seemed to me that the questions got harder with every round,” senior Braden Unruh said. Goessel ended the championship round with a record of 2-3 for fourth place medals.
Representing Goessel at the state competition were seniors Alex Schmidt, Braden Unruh, Jeff Hall, and Stephan Goertzen, junior Johanna Hoffman, and sophomore Ben Wiens.
“This was probably the most well rounded team I have had. Each player has their own individual strengths that seemed to complement each other very well,” coach Wes Schmidt-Tieszen said.
Although Goessel beat some of the championship teams earlier in the day, Bucklin finished first, Satanta, second, and Centre, third in the meet.
Earlier this season, Goessel won the Wheat State League Scholars’ Bowl Championship and won the regional meet, propelling them to the state meet at LeRoy on Saturday.