Springhouse students win Mathcounts competition
Arayman Khandelwal, an eighth-grade student at Springhouse Middle School, and Bruce Wu, a seventh-grader at Eyer Middle School, took first- and second-place honors at the 30th annual Lehigh Valley Mathcounts contest Feb. 8 at Trexler Middle School, Allentown.
In a gripping Jeopardy-style countdown round held before an audience of 500 on-lookers, Wu took to the stage in 10th place and out-answered seven competitors to advance to second place.
Wu and Khandelwal were among the 250 students from 25 schools in Lehigh, Northampton, Monroe, Carbon and Luzerne counties who participated in the regional "Olympics of Math" organized by the Lehigh Valley Chapter of the Pennsylvania Society of Professional Engineers.
Khandelwal and Wu will be joined at the Harrisburg state competitions March 7 and 8 by third-place finisher Ishaan Lai, a sixth grader at Eyer, and fourth-place winner Linda Mao, an eighth-grade student at East Hills Middle School.
All members of the first-place team from Springhouse Middle School, coached by Kevin Hallman, will also participate in the state championship.
The four top state winners will move on to the 2014 National Mathcounts Competition in Orlando, Fla., May 9 with Raytheon Corporation as the title sponsor.
Almost 6,000 schools nationwide participate in the competition co-sponsored by the National Society of Professional Engineers, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and a host of industries that see the importance of making math excellence as challenging, exciting and prestigious as participation in sports.
Eyer Middle School team, coached by Julie Hummell, placed second.
Other top ranking teams were: Nitschman Middle School, third, coached by Nadine Novatek; Moravian Academy, fourth, coached by Alison Overdorf; and Pocono Mountain West Junior High School, fifth, coached by James Feuerstein.
The students spent the morning taking written tests with questions such as: a set of distinct positive integers has a total of 11 digits, and all the digits are ones. What is the smallest possible sum of the integers in the set? (Answer 11,234).,
Tests were sent immediately to a scoring room for grading and ranking.
The afternoon session featured the top 10 ranking individuals paired in a lightning-round stage competition to determine final ranking.
The top 10 individuals were:
First place: Arayman Khandelwal, eighth grade, Springhouse Middle School;
Second place: Bruce Wu, eighth grade, Eyer Middle School;
Third place: Ishaan Lai, sixth grade, Eyer Middle School;
Fourth place: Linda Mau, eighth grade, East Hills Middle School;
Fifth place: Sandhya Sriram, eighth grade, Eyer Middle School
Sixth place: Justine Dell, eighth grade, Moravian Academy;
Seventh place: Alan Guo, eighth grade, Nitschman Middle School;
Eighth place: James Kim, eighth grade, Springhouse Middle School;
Ninth place: Julia Zheng, seventh grade, Nitschman Middle School;
10th place: Andrew Wang, eighth grade, Springhouse Middle School.
The three top-scoring young women will receive a course in math or science at Cedar Crest College.
Moravian, Lafayette , Lehigh Carbon Community and Northampton Community colleges also provided top winners with scholarships for mathematics courses to be taken in their senior year of high school.