April 20, 1998

School

Northshore students shine in statewide math contest

    by Deborah Stone
   Recently, 1,840 fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth graders descended on Blaine, WA to compete in the Washington State Middle School Math Championship. The annual event was hosted by Blaine School District and sponsored by Ferndale Refinery of Tosco Refining Company. A total of 450 teams representing 116 schools came with hundreds of parents, coaches and volunteers.
  
   The students competed individually first, then joined teammates to compete in Mental Math, Probability and Statistics, Algebra, Geometry and Potpourri, which consisted of questions from all of the categories. First through fifteenth place plaques were given in the Individual competition and first through tenth place prizes were awarded to teams in all four grades.
  
   Fifth grader Wayne Liou and sixth grader Niko Olsen of Woodmoor Elementary placed twelfth and sixth respectively in the individual competitions for their grade levels.
  
   Seventh graders Xiao Wang and Andrew Pearsall of Northshore Junior High placed fifth and fifteenth, respectively and eighth grader Rohit Duggal, also from Northshore, placed sixth.
  
   Chief Kanim Middle School's sixth grade team placed sixth in the team competitions and Northshore Junior High's seventh and eighth grade teams received seventh and fifth places respectively.
  
   Cindi Trujillo, Northshore Junior High's math team coach, was pleased with how her students did in the competition. "I'm very happy for the kids as they worked hard and did so well," says Trujillo. "They like the challenge of competitions and thrive on the intensity." Student Xiao Wang of Northshore finds the competitions to be fun. He says, "I really like going to them and it feels great to get placed. When I successfully solve a problem, I feel really good." Andrew Pearsall and Rohit Duggal, also of Northshore, echo a similar sentiment. "Math intrigues me," says Duggal, "and I just want to keep learning more." Pearsall comments, "I compete because I like math. It has specific rules and if you follow the rules, you can solve the problems." Trujillo adds, "Each year, it's so wonderful to see so many students participating because it shows a high interest in academics."