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From the Athletic Director: Winter 2020

Dear Fans of Woodward Athletics,

We are in the midst of an unprecedented period, both worldwide and locally. For the Woodward community, the reality of the COVID-19 outbreak has created profound changes in our daily lives, one of which has been the sacrifice of our spring athletic season. It is a small thing in the face of so much tragedy across the globe, but it is nonetheless a sad reality for our student-athletes that they will not be able to compete in the spring.

In the midst of that sadness, though, we would like to take the time to reflect on our historic 2019-2020 winter athletics season.

As many of you know, our boys basketball team won its first state championship in school history, with star center Walker Kessler being named the Gatorade State Player of the Year. This was a tremendous accomplishment for our program, and we are so very proud of the team, the Georgia AAAA Boys Basketball Coach of the Year Anthony Thomas, and our incredible fans who supported them along the way.

Not to be outdone, our wrestling team continued to demonstrate why it’s one of the top programs not just in Georgia, but nationally, winning the AAAA state and dual championships for the second year in a row. Senior Nick Masters’ final season at Woodward came to a fitting end, with the star wrestler taking home his fourth individual state championship, making him one of just three Woodward wrestlers to accomplish the feat (with Pete Fritts ‘83 and Johnny Stallings ‘75 the two others).

We also were very proud of our girls basketball team, which made it all the way to the Elite Eight of the state tournament, matching the historic boys team every step of the way for most of the season. Our swim & dive team broke a school record, with junior Henry Nichols breaking the 1974 school record in the 50 Free.

I now invite you to read more about these teams and their accomplishments in this winter 2019-2020 edition of War Eagle Watch. Please also read an interview with senior Maddy Cronin, who won’t get a chance to compete in soccer this spring, but will continue her soccer career at the University of Vermont.

It remains a wonderful honor to teach and coach your children. Thank you so much for your trust and support. Together, we will get through this trying period and, doubtless, reach new heights.

Go War Eagles!

Jose Fernandez, Ed.D., Athletic Director


Woodward Academy Athletic Directors