MathCounts team takes top honors

SARANAC LAKE – The Saranac Lake team took first place overall at the MathCounts competition held at the Clinton Community College Arts and Science building in Plattsburgh on March 2.

In the individual rankings, Will Gray took first place overall, Bruno Freeman took second place and Mitch Deleel took eighth place out of 32 competitors.

The Saranac Lake MathCounts team, consisting of Will Gray, Mitch Deleel, Max Campbell, Devan Kidd, Bruno Freeman, Quinn Peer, Colten Clement, Ward Walton, Silas Swanson, Jackie Garso and Erika Swirsky meet weekly during lunch to enrich math skills.

“MathCounts has greatly improved my problem-solving skills,” Eighth grader Will Gray said.

MathCounts is a national math enrichment, coaching and competition program that promotes success through middle school mathematics achievement. There are more than 500 Chapter Competitions, 57 State Competitions and one National Competition held each year. Since 1984, MathCounts helps promote mathematical development through problem solving, analytical thinking, reasoning and teamwork. The three-hour annual contest consisted of a 40-minute individual round, four short, six-minute rounds and a team round. The competition showcases students’ skills in algebra, probability, statistics and geometry. This was the fifth year that Saranac Lake provided a team to the MathCounts competition.

“What I love most about MathCounts is being able to help students from six to eighth grade think “outside the box,”‘ Coach Tyler Chase said.

The Champlain Valley Chapter of the National Society of Professional Engineers has facilitated the local MathCounts competition for the past 25 years spearheaded by Chapter President Wayne Ryan of AES Northeast. According to Robyn Pryce, office manager at AES and MathCounts local organizer five schools participated in this year’s regional competition were Petrova Middle School, Saranac Lake; Seton Academy, Plattsburgh; Stafford Middle School, Plattsburgh; Chazy Rural School, and Peru Middle School.

Saranac Lake Team member Bruno Freeman says, “Joining MathCounts as a sixth grader was definitely a challenge, but I feel that I now have a better understanding of higher level mathematics.”

The Saranac Lake team will continue to the state match in Albany on March 16 at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, with the hopes of proceeding to the Raytheon MathCounts National Completion in Washington, D.C. on May 10.