12-year-old filled out ESPN's top NCAA bracket

Sam Holtz, 12, is tied for first in the ESPN Bracket Challenge, ahead of 11.57 million other entries.

By Ben Hooper
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LAKE ZURICH, Ill., April 7 (UPI) -- Duke's win over Wisconsin in the NCAA Tournament Championship Game propelled an Illinois sixth-grader into the top spot of ESPN's Bracket Challenge.

The 68-63 finish Monday night propelled the bracket filled out by Sam Holtz, 12, of Lake Zurich, into the top spot of the ESPN contest, beating out 11.57 million other submitted brackets.


"Just rushed right through it. I think it was all skill, some people say it was luck, but I think I studied enough," Holtz told WLS-TV.

The contest's website says the entry with the most points will be eligible for a $20,000 Best Buy gift card and a trip to the 2015 Maui Jim Maui Invitational. Holtz is tied for first in the challenge, and ESPN said a raffle will choose the contest winner from the top entries.

However, the contest's rules state participants must be at least 18 years old, and Holtz falls 6 years short of the marker.

Holtz said his father helped him enter the contest and allowed him to use his email address. It was unclear Tuesday whether Holtz would be eligible to claim a prize through his father.


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