MAHOMET — The Mahomet-Seymour High School math team is the best in all of Illinois.
The team took the No. 1 slot at the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics (ICTM) State Math Competition on May 4 by accruing 783 total points, compared to second-place finisher Richmond-Burton with 761 and third-place finisher Latin School of Chicago with 719.
Coach Eric Potter expressed pride in his students, and some of the team members talked this week about the contest and what it was like to take the top spot.
“I thought the competition was pretty good for me,” said Jessica Berkman. “It was my senior year, so there was pressure to finish strong, but overall I feel like we definitely came and performed, and our scores reflected that.”
Freshman Katya Sakhartova also thought the contest went well.
“It was definitely more stressful than regionals, but it was a lot of fun,” she said.
Senior Cassidy Waldrep also said the competition was stressful.
“I was especially proud of my individual score and our calculator team. The relay team didn’t do as well, but that’s OK because we made up for those points in other areas,” she said. “I was very relieved (to win). I was really stressed because I wanted to win it, and I think the whole team knew that I wanted to win, so when they were going 10th, ninth, eighth, seventh, sixth ... it just kept getting more stressful and stressful, but when they said that Richmond-Burton got second, tears are running down my face because I was so relieved that we had won because that was a good way to end senior year.”
Freshman Megan Harrison called the race for state “a great new experience.”
“I was really looking forward to it and I think as a whole we did really well as a team,” she said.
Nick Morrow, a senior, noted that his success in math competition has improved.
“The tests were OK as an individual; I thought they were easier than normal, but we’re not competing against the tests; we’re competing against everyone else,” he said. “We did really well as a team. I got second or third the past three years, and this year, I finally got first.”
Sophomore Matthew Sims said he was nervous.
“I wasn’t sure how it was going to go,” he said.
The entire math team roster is: Nick Morrow, Cassidy Waldrep, Jessica Berkman, Michal Strzebonski, Emma Amjad, Sarah Amjad, Archi Patel, Saloni Patel, Seth Honnigford, Colten Brunner, Gavin Williams, Nic Liagridonis, Riley Watson, Lizzie Stremming, Clayton Burkhalter, Samuel Knight, Mike Taylor, Matthew Simms, Clayton Kessler, Ella Tietz, Tony Huang, Xalina Ramirez Kennedy, Anthony Carpenter, Alexis Young, Jenny Webb, Grant Garrison, Katya Sakhartova, Megan Harrison, Yinuan Liang, Helen Ryding, Cece Abramson, Jonah Singer, Emily Bednar, Joseph Scheele, Vincent Kim and Janey Watson.
Individual awards for Mahomet-Seymour included: Morrow, first in Pre-Calculus; Strzebonski, sixth in Pre-Calculus; Berkman, ninth in Pre-Calculus; Kessler, second in Geometry; Tietz, fifth in Geometry; Sakhartova, first in Algebra 1; and Singer, fourth in Algebra 1.
Team awards included: Emma Amjad and Sarah Amjad, third in Oral Presentation; Morrow and Stzebonski, third in J/S two-person; Taylor and Sakhartova, third in F/S two-person; first place Pre-Calculus Team (Morrow, Berkman, Strzebonski, Waldrep, Archi Patel and Saloni Patel); first place Geometry Team (Burkhalter, Tietz, Taylor, Simms, Kennedy, Huang); first place Algebra 1 Team (Sakhartova, Singer, Harrison, Garrison, Liang, Ryding); first place Calculator Team (Morrow, Waldrep, Kennedy, Garrison, Singer); first place F/S Eight-Person Team (Burkhalter, Tietz, Taylor, Simms, Sakhartova, Harrison, Liang, Ryding); fourth place J/S Eight-Person Team (Berkman, Strzebonski, Saloni Patel, Archi Patel, Honnigford, Williams, Brunner, Morrow); and 10th place Algebra 2 Team (Honnigford, Williams, Brunner, Morrow, Watson, Stremming).