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ACES academic team

Members of the Adair County Elementary School Academic Team who won the regional Governor’s Cup competition Saturday are, front row, from left:  Mason Holliman, Joseph Kotter, Madison Irvin, Grant Adamson, William Rowe, and Nathan Ballou.  Middle row:  Andrew Zinati, Kaydence Karnes, Bailey Watts, and Chloe Copeland.  Back Rowe:  Mrs. Lisa Newell-Hare, Kiana McHolan, Hallie Burton, Gabe Larguero, Brody Blair, Luke Rich, Mrs. Jeana Pike, and Michael Cook.

Just three weeks after capturing the district crown, the Adair County Elementary School Academic Team won the Region 14 Governor’s Cup title Saturday at Clinton County Middle School.  With no state competition for the elementary school level, Adair County ended its season with a hard-earned victory in its toughest challenge of the year.

“At the end of the afternoon Saturday, all the time and hard work that these students had put in had paid off,” says Lisa Newell-Hare, one of the team’s two coaches, along with Jeana Pike.  “They have once again proven that Adair County students take academics to another level.  We hope this serves as a foundation as these students move on to middle school and high school Governor’s Cups.”

Along with the overall championship, the ACES team featured several individuals earning top-five finishes, the Future Problem Solvers (FPS) finished as the region runner up, and the Quick Recall squad won all four of its matches.

Bailey Watts, who finished first in Science, was the only individual winner for Adair, but several students did well in their respective categories.  Others cracking the top five included:  Brody Blair (second place in Arts & Humanities and third place in Language Arts), Kiana McHolan (second place in language arts), Hallie Burton (third place in Written Composition and fifth place in Math), and Madison Irvin (fifth place in Written Composition).

The Quick Recall team, who won matches against Salem Elementary, Monticello, and back-to-back contests against Russell Springs, featured Grant Adamson, Nathan Ballou, Blair, Burton, Michael Cook, Chloe Copeland, Mason Holliman, Irvin, Kaydence Karnes, Joseph Kotter, Gabe Larguero, Luke Rich, Watts, and Andrew Zinati.

“It’s really awesome that [Quick Recall] went undefeated,” Newell-Hare says.  “The 14-13 match against Russell Springs, that was a real nail-biter, back-and-forth affair, but the many hours spent after school and practicing at home really paid off for us.”

The runner up FPS team included Cook, McHolan, Rich, and William Rowe.  “I am so proud of these outstanding students and it has been a joy to work with them,” Pike says.  “Problem solving is something we do every day and actually having a process to follow is invaluable.  It is always challenging to find the most effective way to work with FPS, but these students have stepped up to the challenge and reaped great results in the end.”

With the season over, the returning team members are already eyeing a repeat performance next year.  “They already said they want to keep practicing,” Newell-Hare says.  “So we’ll probably take off the rest of March and then start back up next month.  They’re excited about it.”

In addition to the Region 14 Governor’s Cup, ACES was also nominated for the Katherine Hume Sportsmanship Award for exhibiting positive behavior and good attitudes throughout the competition.


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