B-A middle schoolers place third at Mathcounts


Kathy Taylor

Mathcounts team members include: front row (l to r): Kenneth Robison, Aiden Taylor, Sean Mallon, John Sloey, Brendan Andrews; back row (l to r): Jack Luensmann, Caedon Poe, Zach Mallon, Alex Taylor, Emma Corrado

John Kost, Staff Writer

Last week the Bellwood-Antis middle school math team participated in the Blair Region Mathcounts Competition at the Penn State Altoona Campus and placed third in the team competition.

Three students placed in the individual competition including Aiden Taylor (tenth place), Zach Mallon (eighth place), and Jack Luensmann (fifth place).

“It is always great to see students spending spare time doing math,” said Coach Kathy Taylor.  “I was very proud that our school was able to get three students into the top ten against schools as large as Hollidaysburg and Altoona.”

In the Mathcounts competition the contenders compete in a sprint round, which requires you to answer 30 questions in forty minutes without a calculator, followed by a target round, with 6 questions and a calculator. The last event is the team round of twenty questions for 10 problems.

It seems easy in the classroom, but it is a lot harder under pressure.”

— Jack Luensmann

The team round also includes a countdown round where the top 10 contenders from the combined scores of the sprint and target rounds compete in a head-to-head battle of numbers.

Bellwood-Antis students wanting to compete in this battle of the wits must have fantastic math skills to be on this team.

The B-A squad, coached by Mrs. Kathy Taylor, currently has 10 members who have practiced hard to better understand their math: Luensmann, Mallon, Taylor, Caedon Poe, Alex Taylor, Emma Corrado, Kenneth Robison, Sean Mallon, John Sloey, and Brendan Andrews.

“You do need a lot of preparation to compete at an event like this. It seems easy in the classroom, but it is a lot harder under pressure,” Lunesmann explained.

Bellwood-Antis competes against many bigger schools at the event so it was impressive for B-A to work its way into the top three.

“It felt great to know that I did that well against other great talent,” said Lunesmann.

Mrs. Taylor said a lot of student preparation went into making Mathcounts a success.

“Our students have been working together since September completing practice problems and improving our speed for the countdown round. We will have a strong base for next year,” she said.