Math Team amping it up for a strong end of season


Photo Courtesy of Maddy vanHeukelum

The freshman team out to dinner before a home meet at York in mid December.

Imagine a group of insanely intelligent students, solving problems beyond the grasp of even adults, and doing so by choice, some even as a form of entertainment.

This is the York Math Team, a group of driven students who complete practice contests each week and prepare for meets against other schools; in which they have group rounds and individual rounds. This team would usually hold one practice a week, but with the intense meet schedule that is rapidly approaching, students are now having practices on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

“The best way to prepare is to learn as much as we can about our given topics,” junior Jack Rosenberg said. “If we are ready for the curve balls thrown at us on the contests, then there is a good possibility we can get a frequently missed question right if we prepare well.”

Math Team members have already had several meets this season, competing in a league called NSML, the North Suburban Math League. This league has five meets, the final one being Conference. All of their meets are in preparation for the state meet at the University of Illinois.

The team has not had too much success this season, so far not winning any of their meets, but they did win a candy bar contest at a home meet, in a special portion of the meet where the entire team participates. Sophomore Joey Gemini loves the Candy Bar Contest, especially when he is given the ability to compete with his team.

“During this, the coaches leave the room and copies of a contest is distributed to everyone and the entire team has to tackle the problems,” Gemini said. “This is undoubtedly the most chaotic part of the meet, as everyone in the room is working and have to yell up to someone at the board who is documenting the answers.  It is truly a riot but York usually does alright at it.”

Though the most competitive sections of the meets are the individual rounds, members work on contests each week as a team, encouraging one another to find new ways to solve problems.

“As a grade level we all work together to go through the most challenging problems in our practice competitions to get everyone on the same page,” sophomore Abbey Pettineo said. “Through practicing and explaining reasoning behind problems we all encourage each other to work our hardest on the competitions. Hopefully, we can go to state this year and place to show how much work we’ve put in!

These practices are crucial to the success of the team, so it is imperative that all team members are dedicated to helping the effort.

“The members of math team make sure to come to practice every week so we can work together in preparing for the upcoming weeks,” freshman Maddy van Heukelum said.

Math Team has quite a busy February approaching, with a conference and regional meet. The regional meet is Saturday, Feb. 24 at Glenbard East, which will hopefully lead to an invitation to state. Help encourage your peers on Math Team, and wish them luck before the big meet!