Merriwether math team headed to state event
After winning a regional MathCounts competition at Aiken Technical College Saturday, Merriwether Middle School is headed to a state contest at the University of South Carolina in Columbia on Saturday.
A total of seven students are on the team, but four were chosen as the formal group to determine the final placing. All four finished in the top 11 individually - Ethan Lowe (3rd), Wil Holmes (6th), Chandler Thacker (8th) and Jared Bodiford (11th), and that performance earned them a place in an informal countdown contest. In that one-on-one elimination event, Holmes took third place.
The others on the squad are Misty Henderson, Jacob Hodges and Emily Santiago-Preachers.
Gilric Stroman and Ivey Li, both of Schofield Middle School in Aiken, finished one-two in the individual results and will also move on to the state contest.
JET Middle School placed second as a team to Merriwether. Gracie Herrin finished 10th to lead the team. In the morning session, students participated individually and on teams to test their abilities in the areas of algebra, probability, statistics and geometry.
The program held in Aiken is sponsored annually by the Aiken Chapter of the S.C. Society of Professional Engineers, ATC and the CSRA Section of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
Georgie Rohr, the Merriwether eighth grade math teacher, has coached the MathCounts team for many years.
"We're really proud of our team this year and their accomplishments," she said. "They even had to try and eliminate their own team members at one point during this round. They also won the paper airplane contest for accuracy during the lunch break."
According to a press release, MathCounts is a nationwide middle school math enrichment program, with competitions held annually. Nationally, more than 250,000 students utilize MathCounts materials, and over 6,000 schools participate in competitions annually. More than six million students have participated since the program began in 1993. MathCounts targets middle school students, with it being a crucial age in sustaining and developing math interest and ability.