MARCH MADNESS: News vs. Booze – Day 12

News-Booze-williams-vann-scotch-wineTwo of yesterday’s four contestants were born in Kentucky. One earned a berth in the Elite 8. The other was overwhelmingly eliminated.

No. 6 seed and WAFB reporter Kiran Chawla received by far the most votes of any tournament competitor thus far, getting over 2,100 votes in her 74.3%-to-25.7% victory over her third-seeded coworker Greg Meriwether. It seems our speculation of a possible “Street Beatdown” of the Louisville native came to pass.

And while the booze matchup saw less than one-tenth of the total votes cast on the news side, sixth-seeded bourbon still prevailed over No. 3 seed champagne with a solid 61.6% of the vote. Looks like the bubbly finally went flat.

In our final Sweet 16 pairings, today’s matchups feature fruit of the vine, a “real man’s” drink, and the first contest of the tourney between two local morning show anchors from competing stations.

NEWS: Matt Williams (10) vs. Whitney Vann (2)


9News This Morning anchorman and No. 10 seed Matt Williams got to the Sweet 16 by eliminating WAFB coworker Cheryl Mercedes with a staggering 87.6% of the vote. For her part, Mercedes said she didn’t bother to lobby for her own survival because she “spent the day pushing a lead story rather than bracket votes! (winky face)”

Well, if Matt wants to stay alive, he definitely better step up his game today, because his second round opponent will not let a little thing like work get in the way of winning this tournament. That’s because second-seeded Whitney Vann is seemingly a master of both multitasking and leveraging her popularity into calls for action (i.e., voting for her or her 2une In cohost John Pastorek) by her countless minions. She managed to get 55.3% of the 1,574 votes cast in the first round en route to a victory over WAFB’s Tyana Williams.

Whitney arguably has the largest sphere of influence in this tournament. Not only is she a local TV celebrity, but she’s involved in numerous community groups, and she’s the reigning queen of Spanish Town Mardi Gras. Her subjects are all but legally obligated to vote for her until their fingers fall off. But you ultimately will decide if she or Matt moves on to the Elite 8!

BOOZE: Scotch (7) vs. Wine (2)

Seventh-seeded scotch advanced to the Sweet 16 by narrowly defeating rum 56.4% to 43.6%. Obviously, Don Draper would be shocked that a party drink would come so close to defeating the revered spirit.

We’ll see if the “serious drinkers” show up to the polls to vote for scotch, which faces off against ubiquitous wine. Like scotch, the No. 2 seed also barely lived to see another day in the tournament by surging late and getting 54.6% of the vote to underdog malt liquor’s 45.4%. Or, in other words, wine almost was undone by winos.

But today, it’s “Saint Peat” (trademarked) against Jesus Juice. Who will ascend to victory?

Ready. Set. VOTE! (Polls close nightly at 10 p.m. CDT.)


FYI: If you’re trying to make sense of this experimental info-alcohol competition, here’s an explanation. You can also find all March Madness results/other March Madness posts by using our handy “MARCH MADNESS: News vs. Booze” tag.RedShtick-Top-ColumnStop

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