Plainview High School Academic Team is the only local team advancing to the state tournament after winning the school's first Area Championship.
The school has been to state three times before, but has never advanced undefeated at area. Surprisingly, the championship also came after Plainview placed third in regionals.
Led in scoring by Captain Riley Baird, the team finished with an Area Tournament point average of 293.33.
"We had an abnormally high average because we were able to work as a team," Baird said. "We weren't as worried about scoring higher than each other, when before we had some in-fighting." The scoring average ties Cascia Hall as the highest Class 4A average headed into state competition.
The Area Championship came only a week after the team won the Stigler Tournament. In a combined round robin and bracket tournament, Plainview won eight straight games, including one against the host team. Senior John Black made the All-Tournament Team.
Plainview will face Stigler again in the first round of state Feb. 2 at Redlands Community College in El Reno. The next round will be based on the Byng-Clinton match-up.
"We are very happy with our spot in the bracket," said Coach Melinda Wallace. "We have already beaten Stigler once this year, but it was a very close game. Every game at the state level is a tough game and a nailbiter." Also in 4A, Lone Grove competed at area, but lost in its first two games.
In 5A, Ardmore won its first match, but lost the next two. It 's the first time in several years that Ardmore has not advanced to state.
Senior Kevin Stolfa received a brief ovation after answering all 10 questions on imaginary numbers during a single 60-second round.
After the team lost, members volunteered to serve as scorekeeper/ timer for another team who was missing members due to the flu. T he y would have been disqualified had Ardmore team members not stepped in.
"It wasn't how area has turned out for us in the past, but it was good," said Coach Patty Lee. "I am very proud of our sportsmanship." In Class 2A, neither Ringling nor Davis advanced to state.
"Overall, we had a really good season, and we are already planning for next year," said Davis Coach Amanda Rogers.