For the third year in a row, Yogeshwar Velingker, an eighth-grade student at Orefield Middle School, took first place in the Lehigh Valley Mathcounts competition, held Sunday at Trexler Middle School in Allentown.
Alana Dee, an eighth-grade student at St. Joseph the Worker School in Orefield, was the top female contender. She placed eighth overall.
The 29th annual event attracted more than 200 middle-school competitors from five counties.
As a sixth-grader in 2011, Yogeshwar had placed first in the Lehigh Valley competition. And as the 2012 winner of the regional contest, he went on to take first place at the state championship, winning the right to compete on the national level.
Now Yogeshwar will move on to the 2013 state level competition in March in the national “Olympics of Math,” organized by the National Society of Professional Engineers in association with several other organizations.
In Sunday's regional competition, organized by Lehigh Valley Chapter of the PA Society of Professional Engineers, Orefield Middle School was the top ranking team of the 30 schools that participated. Brian Fulmer coached the team.
coached by Kevin Hallman, placed third overall.
St. Joseph the Worker School, coached by Karen Snyder, placed 10th overall.
The students spent the morning taking a series of tests that featured questions like:
- The product of three consecutive odd integers is 9177. What is the sum of these three integers? (63)
- Draw a pentagon with each of its five diagonals. How many triangles are contained in the figure? (35.)
Tests were sent immediately to a scoring room for grading and ranking. The afternoon session featured the top-10-ranking individuals paired in a “Jeopardy” like stage competition to determine final ranking. The top 10 individuals were as follows:
- First Place - Velingker
- Second Place – Alexander High, eighth-grade student at East Hills Middle School
- Third place – Michael Medaugh, eighth-grade student at Pocono Mountain East Middle School
- Fourth place –Daniel Qian, eighth-grade student at Southern Lehigh Middle School
- Fifth place – Sai Mallipedhi, eighth-grade student at Springhouse Middle School
- Sixth place – Aryaman Khandelwal, seventh-grade student at Springhouse Middle School
- Seventh place - Matthew Liu, sixth-grade student at Springhouse Middle School
- Eighth place- Dee
- Ninth place – Shaumik Phadke, an eighth-grader at Springhouse Middle School
- Tenth place - Jereme Chien, an eighth-grade student at Lower Macungie Middle School
In addition to Dee, top ranking female competitors were: Sarah Mackin, an eighth-grader at Southern Lehigh Middle School, and Sandhya Sriaam, a seventh-grader at Eyer Middle School in Lower Macungie.
The Orefield team, along with Velingker and the other top four student finishers, will advance to the state competition in March at the Sheraton Harrisburg Hershey Hotel. The Lehigh Valley Chapter will pay the registration and hotel costs for the competitors and their coaches.
The four top Pennsylvania students will go to Washington, D.C., in May to vie for national honors. Almost 6,000 schools nationwide participate in the competition co-sponsored by the National Society of Professional Engineers, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and a host of industries that see the importance of making math excellence as challenging, exciting and prestigious as participation in sports.