Sajani Sivakumar, Liam Lustberg, Katherine Yang, and Helen Wang make up the winning team which qualifies them for the State meet in March.

Making it Count: Tuttle Middle School Team Wins MATHCOUNTS Competition

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Thursday February 21, 2013

The Tuttle Middle School Math Team has won the Vermont Northwest regional math competition, held at UVM Rowell Building on Saturday, February 9. Approximately 120 students from 13 middle schools in Northwestern Vermont competed individually and in teams, in written and fast-paced oral formats on subjects that included probability, statistics, algebra, and geometry. 

The excitement culminated in a dramatic single-elimination tournament during the Countdown Round in Carpenter Auditorium, where the top 12 students competed against each other and the clock in front of an enthusiastic audience, answering questions such as:

Jaime can paint a wall in 20 minutes, and Ellie can paint the same wall in 15 minutes.  If they work together, how many minutes will it take them to paint one wall of this size?  (Answer:  9 minutes)

Liam Lustberg qualified 1st;  Katherine Yang was 2nd;  Helen Wang was 5th;  Kailey Yang was 7th; Sajani Sivakumar was 9th;  Will Graham was 10th;  Stephen Li was 12th but moved up to 11th after Will Graham was unable to compete (due to a prior commitment).

Coached by Tuttle math teacher John Radimer, the winning team—comprised of Liam Lustberg, Sajani Sivakumar, Helen Wang, and Katherine Yang—has qualified for the State meet, which will be on March 16th at Vermont Technical College in Randolph. Lustberg and Katherine Yang also placed 1st and 2nd as individuals, respectively. Despite finishing 9th overall in the written part of the competition, Sivakumar was able to win the Countdown portion by defeating four competitors, including two of her own teammates. Wang received an honorable mention. Other team members include Sabrina Chiang, Sydney Ferro, Sonya Heldman, Duncan Chen, Trang Do and Andie Pinga.

Kailey Yang qualified for the State meet as an individual, and Li and Graham are also waiting to hear if they have qualified individually.

“The mathematical abilities of Vermont’s middle school students are truly inspiring,” says Joe Kudrle, MATHCOUNTS NW Coordinator.  “MATHCOUNTS is a great opportunity for schools in Vermont to recognize talented students for their exceptional mathematical abilities and to provide students with the mathematical skills necessary to be globally competitive.”

The top four individuals from the State Competition will form the Vermont team which will travel to the 2013 Raytheon MATHCOUNTS National Competition in Washington, D.C. in May. For more information, see