Math Team Number One Again

MacDuffie knocks off Deerfield for first WMML Championship in three years.

Math Team Number One Again

Nicolette Peterson, Senior Staff Writer

MacDuffie’s math team won their last match of the season this Valentine’s Day, finishing in first place overall and knocking off two-time defending champions Deerfield Academy to win the title of Western Massachusetts Mathematics League Champions. The meet was held at Sabis International Charter School of Springfield, where Math Teacher and Head Coach Peter Shelburne estimates eleven to twelve teams gathered to compete.

Six MacDuffie students are chosen from the results of six levels of quizzes spread out over the course of three tryouts at the beginning of each academic year. Restrictions correlate to grade level, with a maximum of three seniors and five juniors and seniors combined. The potential for a fresh team exists every year, as returning math team members are given “no special treatment” over first time competitors, according to Shelburne. The six members composing this year’s math team were seniors Xinyu (Walker) Tian and Zixuan (Camellia) Liu, juniors Suchen (Dollar) Zhu, Nam Vo, and Yuanjin (Jane) Lyu, and freshman Sijun (Nicolas) Wang, with half the team returning from last year.

The championship is MacDuffie’s first since the 2014 team, led by Jiachang (Harry) Liu, won a second consecutive title over their rivals from Deerfield, the league’s long-time powerhouse. Team Captain Camellia Liu expresses happiness with how her senior championship meet ended, saying “I was in ninth grade when I heard of the team’s big win, so they got a first place for that year, and since then every time we’ve got a second place.” Liu says the team’s hard work and practice paid off. After following one point behind Deerfield’s score, the MacDuffie team pulled ahead, earning first place with a total 86 points; Deerfield came in third with 65 points, finishing third in the league behind MacDuffie and Longmeadow High School.

Though the math team’s regular season has officially concluded with the championship meet, Shelburne says the team expects to move on to the state meet on March 31.