State championship puts Scholars Bowl team in high school’s record book
Awards bearing the words state champions are conspicuously absent from the collection of team trophies and banners inside Basehor-Linwood High School.
From an unlikely source, the school now has one.
Over the weekend, the BLHS Scholars Bowl team won the 4A state championship from a field of contenders at Kingman High School. The team of four players and one alternate outwitted all other opponents in the trivia-style competition.
Nancy Crichton, high school teacher and Scholars Bowl sponsor, said her team worked hard to win the state championship and deserves recognition from the community for its achievement.
"We're kind of fighting the age-old battle of academics versus sports," Crichton said. "A lot of times things like debate, forensics and Scholars Bowl gets shunted aside. But, it's kind of nice to have this gigantic state trophy."
Winning the state championship shouldn't come as a surprise. The core of the team, seniors Christian Pasche, Kyle Bragdon, Sam Neal and Brian Roberts and junior James Nelson, finished no worse than second place during matches this season.
Last week, the team advanced to the state competition by winning regionals at De Soto.
Perhaps the most distinguishing mark of a champion is overcoming obstacles, which is exactly what the gritty Scholars Bowl team accomplished in Kingman.
They won the state championship in the final round by correctly answering a math question, an area the team has struggled with at times this season.
Crichton said she hopes the state championship will inspire students to take an interest in Scholars Bowl.
"Hopefully people will show more interest now," she said. "At least everyone will know this exists now."
Thanks to the Scholars Bowl team, the high school now has something its sports teams never provided.
"It's our first-ever state championship," Crichton said. "That's just so great."