Grice finishes runner-up at state championship

Published 7:20 pm Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Eli Grice’s run at a state championship came up just short on Tuesday morning with a loss in the finals. The Patriot junior fell to Morgan Academy’s Trevor Wilson 3-6, 0-6.

“Of course I would have rather been the champion, but coming in second place feels really good,” Grice said. “For me, it’s a step towards my ultimate goal of becoming champion.”

Grice made the trip up to Montgomery on Monday to begin the state tournament. Grice won two matches to set up Tuesday’s championship match.

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Grice’s appearance in the championship on Tuesday marked the first time that a player from Pike Liberal Arts played for a championship.

“I’m proud to represent my school,” Grice said. “Being the first one, it’s just a really proud moment for me.”

After being eliminated in his first single’s match in last year’s tournament, Grice immediately began to work towards this season. He worked on a daily basis and it paid off during this year’s tournament.

“A lot more hard work,” Grice said. “I took clinics every single day during the summer, I worked out a lot with my school and with the Troy players.”

Grice just finished his junior season with the Patriots and falling just short will continue to motivate Grice. The junior plans to work even harder this summer in preparation for next season.

“It really lights a fire under me,” Grice said. “Seeing what the hard work did for me this year, getting me so far, I really see what it takes now to be the champion. I am ready to work for it.”

There was no shortage of people that Grice wanted to thank for his success this season.

“I want to thank God, my coach Mrs. Allen, my parents Angie and Steve Grice and my teammates,” Grice said. “Just for supporting me and helping me throughout the year.”