Merry Acres Middle School placed second at the recently completed Regional Academic Bowl competition at Colquitt County High School in Moultrie. Team members are, from left, back row, John Hatcher, Dane Armstrong, Grant Brunson, Lennis Price IV (Captain), Adam Bedingfield (co-captain) and Justin Evans. Middle row, from left, are Saloni Patel, Mary Rachel Bonner, Robert Peacock, Jarrett Smith and Byron Williams. Kneeling are team coaches Tammy Bankole, Rhonda Harden, and Valencia Rivers.
MOULTRIE — Merry Acres Middle School finished second to Valdosta Middle School in the Regional Academic Bowl in Moultrie last weekend in an event that attracted teams from 11 schools.
Representing Doughty County’s public schools were Merry Acres Middle, Dougherty International Middle, and Robert Cross Middle. Deerfield Windsor School, a newcomer to the event, represented Dougherty’s private education sector.
Merry Acres Middle led the way in its division during the early and middle rounds of competition for five consecutive victories.
The round scores were: Round I, MAMS defeated C.A. Gray (Moultrie) 110-40; Round II, MAMS took down Deerfield Windsor (Albany) 100-85; Round III, MAMS topped Brookwood (Thomasville) 130-75; Round IV, MAMS bested DIEM (Albany) 170-50; and in Round V, MAMS defeated Cook (Sparks) 165-55.
“We were sure of our abilities; therefore, there was no trepidation on our part,” Lennis Price IV, Merry Acres’ team captain, said.
As a result of the Merry Acres Braves’ performance during the opening rounds, the judges acknowledged them as first place winners in Division I and they entered the Crossover Round against Valdosta Middle, where Merry Acres lost the round 105-80.
Afterward, the Braves accepted the runner-up PAGE Academic Bowl for Middle Grades trophy.
“We will begin preparing for GATA’s (Georgia Academic Team Association) tournament that takes place this March in Atlanta,” team coach Rhonda Harden said. “That tournament is the mother of all tournaments of sorts in that it provides the perfect competitive platform for well-rounded students across Georgia to compete, gain exposure, and excel.”
In addition to Harden, the team is also coached by teachers Valencia Rivers and Tammy Bankole. The school’s principal is Ufot Inyang.