26 April 2019
This year, Atholton’s Math Team rocked math competitions, leaving other Howard County schools in their parabola dust.
The Atholton Math Team is a Raiders academic team that participates in the Howard County Math League (HCML) and seven competitions a year (one per month), with their first being on October 16th and the last being on April 10th.
Club president Senior Francis Lapid said that the competitions are split up into an individual section and a team section. The individual section consists of six questions, ranging from pre-algebra to pre-calculus. The team section consists of five difficult problems. At the end of the meet, teams and individuals tally up how many questions they got right, which correlate to a certain number of points, and the teams place in order of who has the most points at the end of both sections.
According to Ms. Toohey, the teacher sponsor of the Math Team, the team had a very solid season, consistently finishing in places two to four out of 12 schools in many of their competitions. Although the team had an excellent season overall, Ms. Toohey did add that she wishes the team could “have more members all across the grade levels, not just people that consider themselves high achievers in math.” She added that the club is for those who just have an interest in math.
With a new season comes new memories, and the consensus opinion was that the most memorable moment was when the team came in first place at one of their meets. Lapid said they “came in first place and beat other top-tier schools, like Centennial High School and Marriotts Ridge High School, who are revered for their math.”
This year the team also had three members qualify for the AIME (American Invitational Mathematics Examination) including freshmen Dallin Christensen, freshman Adam Martinson, and Junior Jessica Wu. Dallin Christensen said that qualifying for the AIME was the most memorable moment of the year for him. The AIME is a next level competition for students who do well enough in county based competitions. According to Dallin, the AIME consists of “15 questions, you have three hours to answer them.” He added that the questions are “pretty difficult” and an example of one is “find the smallest prime factor of 2,019 to the power of eight plus one.”
With consistent top four finishes and three members qualifying to the AIME, the 2018-19 season for the Atholton Math Team was a success, and the future only looks brighter for next year.