Houston’s Langham Creek High School wins NOSB Sportsmanship Award

May 06, 2014

By Cindie Powell

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Students from Langham Creek High School in Houston were honored as the most sportsmanlike competitors at the 2014 National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) national finals in Seattle, Wash., May 1-4.

The volunteer officials at the event voted to present the James D. Watkins Sportsmanship Award, which recognizes the team that best embodies the spirit of earnest competition while demonstrating exemplary decorum, to Aleeya Ali, Amanda Fontenot, Madison Selldin, Jaffar Syed and Malek Williams. The team, coached by Amanda Sebesta, won the Dolphin Challenge, the regional NOSB competition held at Texas A&M University at Galveston on Feb. 1, to advance to the national competition.

“This is the second year in a row that a Texas team has demonstrated the best of Southern manners. In addition, Langham Creek raised the most money for the NOSB ‘Get in the Game’ fundraising campaign,” said Terrie Looney, NOSB regional coordinator. “I had the pleasure of traveling home with the team. During our 10-hour journey through airports, they were a real pleasure to be around.”

Looney is also the Coastal and Marine Resources Agent for Jefferson and Chambers counties for Texas A&M University’s Texas Sea Grant College Program, which hosts two competitions in Texas, the Dolphin Challenge in northern Texas and the Loggerhead Challenge for teams from the southern part of the state.

Austin’s Chaparral Star Academy, the winners of the Loggerhead Challenge March 1 at The University of Texas Marine Science Institute in Port Aransas, took sixth place at the national competition. The team — Kimberly Brockhausen, Randi Cannon, Alex Clarke, Eric Clinch and Brady Romero — was coached by Kris Barnett, with Allyson Fox serving as assistant coach.

NOSB is a quiz bowl-style competition, in which students answer questions in all disciplines of the ocean sciences: biology, chemistry, physics, geology, geography and the social sciences. It is managed nationally by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C. NOSB is designed to encourage and support the next generation of marine scientists, policy makers, teachers, explorers, researchers, technicians and informed citizens to be stewards of the ocean. In 2014, about 2,000 students from more than 300 high schools participated. Twenty-two regional winners from around the country competed at the national finals.


Houston’s Langham Creek High School, winners of the James D. Watkins Sportsmanship Award at the National Ocean Sciences Bowl competition in Seattle, Wash., May 1-4. Pictured are, from left, team members Malek Williams, Jaffar Syed, Amanda Fontenot, Madison Selldin, Aleeya Ali, Coach Amanda Sebesta, and Texas NOSB Regional Coordinator Terrie Looney. (Photo courtesy Amanda Sebesta; a higher-resolution version is available for download here)


Texas Sea Grant is a unique partnership that unites the resources of the federal government, the State of Texas and universities across the state to create knowledge, tools, products and services that benefit the economy, the environment and the citizens of Texas. It is administered through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and is one of 33 university-based Sea Grant Programs around the country. Texas Sea Grant is a non-academic research center in the College of Geosciences at Texas A&M University. The program’s mission is to improve the understanding, wise use and stewardship of Texas coastal and marine resources.