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8th Grade Math Team Qualifies for State Competition
Wednesday, April 04, 2012
(L-R) Kyle Zimmerschied, Zach Bazan, Janai Randall, and Alex Lakin took second in regional math competition Mar. 31.

Math contests are a great way for any student to hone math skills and have fun with friends in a lively, competitive atmosphere, and Knob Noster middle and fifth grade students have experienced a lot of success this year in area contests. However, for top middle school math students, larger competitions with higher stakes represent a welcome challenge because if they place in those contests, they know they are winning against some of the best math students in Missouri.

Such is the case with the eighth grade math team of Kyle Zimmerschied, Alex Lakin, Janai Randall, and Zach Bazan who competed separately and as a team Sat. Mar. 31, at the Missouri Council of Teachers of Mathematics Regional Math Contest in Clinton. Competing in the Algebra I division with about 40 students from 10 area schools, Zimmerschied took third, Lakin fourth, and Bazan fifth in individual events, and the team took second place overall. The team event came down to a tie for first with Barstow, and they had to answer seven tie-breaker questions before they got one wrong, giving them the second.

Their high standing qualifies them for the May 5 state math contest in Springfield. If they place at state, they qualify for national competition in Washington DC this summer.

The MCTM contest is this team’s second win in select competition. They also took fourth place at a regional Math Counts competition at the University of Missouri-Kansas City earlier this year. To prepare for the upcoming state contest, they are practicing before and after school with math coaches Rebekkah Smale and Bethany Johnston. They plan on staying in Springfield the night before the May 5 event and will do fundraisers to cover travel and lodging expenses. Those interested in contributing to their efforts can contact either Johnston or Smale through the middle school office at 660.563.2260.