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MATHCOUNTS Team Qualifies for State Competition

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MATHCOUNTS Team Qualifies for State Competition

The 2017-18 TBS MATHCOUNTS team: back row, left to right -
 Aadi Patel (7), Kiran Spencer (7), Jake Zur (8), Jack Horgen (8), Madeline Comorat (8), and Grace Kearns; front row, left to right - Jonathan Skatoff, Wilson Stewart, Addie Vining, and Joie Rodin

The 2017-18 TBS MATHCOUNTS team: back row, left to right - Aadi Patel (7), Kiran Spencer (7), Jake Zur (8), Jack Horgen (8), Madeline Comorat (8), and Grace Kearns; front row, left to right - Jonathan Skatoff, Wilson Stewart, Addie Vining, and Joie Rodin

Mrs. Hansen

The 2017-18 TBS MATHCOUNTS team: back row, left to right - Aadi Patel (7), Kiran Spencer (7), Jake Zur (8), Jack Horgen (8), Madeline Comorat (8), and Grace Kearns; front row, left to right - Jonathan Skatoff, Wilson Stewart, Addie Vining, and Joie Rodin

Mrs. Hansen

Mrs. Hansen

The 2017-18 TBS MATHCOUNTS team: back row, left to right - Aadi Patel (7), Kiran Spencer (7), Jake Zur (8), Jack Horgen (8), Madeline Comorat (8), and Grace Kearns; front row, left to right - Jonathan Skatoff, Wilson Stewart, Addie Vining, and Joie Rodin

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On Saturday, February 10, the Benjamin MathCounts team had an impressive showing at the regional competition at Gulf Stream School. The TBS team earned second place overall out of 15 competing schools while seventh grader Kiran Spencer finished first out of 150 students in the individual competition.

According to www.mathcounts.org, “the mission of MATHCOUNTS® is to increase enthusiasm for and enhance achievement in middle school mathematics throughout the United States. With the generous support of all MATHCOUNTS sponsors and volunteers, and leadership of the National Society of Professional Engineers at the local and state levels, MATHCOUNTS is providing today’s students with the foundation for success in science, technology, engineering or mathematics careers.

The regional event consisted of four parts: a 30-question test – which every participant took to qualify for the final round, a team competition featuring the top four mathletes from each team, a speed round where each school nominated participants, and the final round to decide the individual winner. This was an intense competition, but one in which the TBS team fared well.

Since there was a lot of interest amongst the middle school students, a tryout was held via  a written “test.”  The top four students were selected to represent TBS as its “official” team who would also compete individually (co-captains Madeline Comorat and Jack Horgen, Kiran Spencer, and Wilson Stewart), and the next six students were selected to compete on an individual basis: Grace Kearns, Aadi Patel, Joie Rodin, Jonathan Skatoff, Addie Vining, and Jake Zur. Sai Chigurupati and Ella Pierman were selected as alternates. The team’s success this year came as a bit of a surprise, but eighth grader and team co-captain Madeline Comorat believes the team did well because of their  preparation.

“During lunch and study halls, we would practice timed problems similar to the ones at the competition with our team,” she said. “We would also do practice problems for homework every night.”

Having an experienced mathlete like Spencer on the team didn’t hurt either.  “Kiran does other math competitions, like the AMC math competition he is doing right now, so he was very well prepared,” said Comorat. “He also knew many different strategies, which he taught us. I think this was the reason for our team’s success.”

Although he finished first individually and helped the team place second, Spencer was  very humble about the experience. “I think everyone contributed,” he said. “I’ve practiced a lot, but everyone helped.” He also wasn’t counting on his first-place showing. “I expected to do well, but first place was surprising. I’m excited about it, but it isn’t too special. I have math competitions all the time. I have the AMC math event [on February 22].”

Spencer, along with the team’s top four qualifiers from the regional competition – Comorat, Horgan, Spencer, and Stewart – will now move on to the state competition which will be in  Daytona on March 23. Each person who has qualified will participate in all sections of the tournament.

According to the MATHCOUNTS team advisor and Math Department Chair Mrs. Cathy Hansen, This Benjamin School is no stranger to success at these competitions. “In 2008, we came in first place for the team round, [and] we took four students to states,” she said. “In 2005 we came in fourth in the team round, and five years ago we also had one young gentleman who made it to states on his own. Before my time, we have even had two people go to nationals!”

Hansen was not surprised the team did well in the regional round this year, which she attributes to the team’s hard work. “The effort this year is what I credit our success to, the want to win and the want to get involved. We also have some very intelligent young men and women this year.”

Hopefully, the team will be equal to the task at the state competition and all of their hard work will add up to more success on March 23.

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MATHCOUNTS Team Qualifies for State Competition