By DIANE GASPER-O'BRIEN
Win or lose, Cheryl Shepherd-Adams said her scholars bowl team was looking forward to competing against some of the state's best Monday.
Bad weather, however, brought the Hays High School team's season to a premature end.
The Indians were scheduled to compete in a Class 5A regional meet in Shawnee, which had been postponed Thursday because of heavy snow in the eastern part of the state.
All four of the 6A and 5A regional meets were postponed until Monday, as were several of those with schools in smaller classifications in eastern Kansas.
Even the meets that did go on as scheduled Thursday featured smaller fields because of the weather.
Shepherd-Adams had high hopes for her team to make the trip heading into the weekend. Then came more snow Sunday evening.
After checking with the Kansas Department of Transportation early Monday morning, she said, "roads were fine east of Manhattan, but the KDOT site showed Interstate 70 completely snow-packed (between Hays and Junction City) at 8:30 when I had to make the call."
"Disappointed kids and coach," Shepherd-Adams added.
The two seniors on the HHS team -- Nicole Feyerherm and Samantha Rohleder -- will have good memories from the final meet of their career as they made the finals and placed fourth at the Norton Invitational on Feb. 3 after losing a close match with Thomas More Prep-Marian High School.
"They felt good about how they did at Norton," Shepherd-Adams said. "It's always a very competitive meet, and having that close a match with TMP was encouraging because (TMP) always has a good team ... really experienced."
Three days after the Norton meet, Norton and TMP, which finished 1-2 at the tournament, qualified for the 3A state meet by finishing in the top three at their 3A regional on the TMP campus.
Mill Valley, the host team of the 5A Shawnee regional that placed fourth at state a year ago, qualified for the season finale again Monday, along with Leavenworth, Lansing and Overland Park's St. Thomas Aquinas from the regional site.