On May 1, the Math Team, coached by Laura Jenkins and Brian Thornley, left Huntley High School to go to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. The state tournament was held on the campus, and the team stayed overnight in order to participate at the tournament the next day.
A total of ten students qualified for the tournament. On the eight person team, comprised of juniors and seniors, seniors Harry Hochwarter, Roshni Bhatt, Liam Elke, and Chad Juergensen, competed with juniors Brendan O’Donnell, Zach Swim, Isaac Reiter, and Polina Poznyack. The eight-person team has 20 minutes to answer 20 questions, with each correct answer worth five points.
However, the eight-person team that went to state was not the original team that qualified. Juniors Erin Gaitsch and Morgan Sutherland decided to skip out on the state tournament on the grounds that Prom was the day of the tournament. Reiter and Swim were brought in as substitutes.
On the individual level, freshman Rainer Bravo competed at the Algebra I level, sophomore Shamika Patil competed at the Geometry level, and junior Polina Poznyack competed at the Algebra II level. Individuals get 50 minutes to answer 20 questions.
On May 2, the team first attended an opening ceremony where they sang the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics theme song and listened to an inspirational speaker, before breaking up to compete in the different events. The results have not yet been posted, but Jenkins remains optimistic for the fate of her students.
“Our eight-person team is pretty strong,” said Jenkins. “I would love to be top 20 in the state, for our eight-person team. I always am excited when we have individuals and I would like to see them in the top 100.”
Even if the team did not do well, memories were certainly made on the trip.
“It was a great experience,” said Patil. “We all had a lot of fun being together as a team.”