OKMULGEE, Oklahoma – The Muscogee Nation Challenge Bowl 2023 returned to an in-person competition. It was hosted at the College of the Muscogee Nation each Friday over the month of February starting on Feb. 10.
The middle school division was the first competition held with a total of 27 teams. The championship round featured two teams from Glenpool to go head to head, Glenpool Lvste vs. Glenpool Oske Entacv.
The Glenpool teams took the top three spots with Glenpool Pvrko Ome at third place, Glenpool Oske Entacv at second place, and Glenpool Lvste at first place.
The Wilbur Gouge Award honors Wilbur Gouge, a founding member of the Challenge Bowl. It is awarded to the team of each division who exemplifies the true spirit of the games.
The Wilbur Gouge award was awarded to the Beggs No Names for the middle school age group.
According to comments gathered from an evaluation, the middle school students “love the Challenge Bowl’ and “will be back “ for next year’s game.
Out of 26 teams, it was a Glenpool team to take home the championship title during the elementary division as well, Glenpool Tentke. Glenpool Kaccv came in second place and Glenpool Fayv came in third place.
The Glenpool teams shared the Wilbur Gouge Award for the elementary age group.
One student said, “Muscogee (Creek) Nation is the best place to be,”
There were 16 teams for the high school division that was held on Feb. 24.
The competitions got serious as students sat with team members with buzzers in hand; ready to hit the button quickly.
Glenpool teams went head to head again for the championship. It was Glenpool Fuswvlke coming out on top with Glenpool Hotvlvke in second place. Beggs No Names came in third place.
First place team Glenpool Fuswvlke was awarded the Wilbur Gouge award in the high school age group.
The high school students said they enjoyed coming to the college for the competition and that it was “hard but educational”.
The Belvin Hill Scholarship went to Olivia Begay and Grant Greever.
Belvin Hill is one of the original founders of the Challenge Bowl. The committee honors Hill by awarding a scholarship to one female and one male graduating senior.
This scholarship is based on the students’ participation and their essay on “Why the Challenge Bowl is important to me”.
Oneta Ridge Middle School JOM Sponsor Russell Sullivan said his group was glad to be back in person.
“Sportsmanship and respect could be witnessed throughout the day,” he said. “ We were fortunate to be a part of this wonderful event and we look forward to competing again.”
Johnson O’Malley Manager Brittany Kesler was elated at the games’ success during her first years serving in her manager position and the first year back in person.
“We wanted it to be a great experience for everyone, and were all ready to come back in person. When I say we, I believe it would be okay to say this includes our tribe, the core committee, volunteers, students and sponsors.“
Kesler looks forward to next year’s competition.