Mathletes prep for a new season

After the Diamond Bar High School math team participated in their final competition of the season on Nov. 18, they began looking ahead to  making improvements to the club in order to have a stronger start next school year. 

In round two of the Math Madness tournament, DBHS faced  Adlai High School in Illinois, and, although the Brahmas had a lead over Adlai until the latter half of the round,  lost 40-32. DBHS defeated Glenbrook South High School and Moravian Academy to reach round two. 

In each competition, the team has 30 minutes to answer eight questions. Although Adlai, the No. 1 ranked team in the nation, won, senior officer Lucas Wang said he was proud of the DBHS team’s effort. Top scorers included senior Tony Wan, who answered eight questions correctly, and juniors Aaron Sun and Allen Wang as well as sophomores Jason Kim and Andrew Huang, who answered six questions correctly. 

“I would be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed, but it was also to be expected that we lost against a number one team,” he said via Zoom. “I think our team held our own against [Adlai] very well.”

Wang said that the team started out strong in the beginning, as they did gain a lead on Adlai within the first 15 minutes of the competition, but then started falling behind in the second half after each member made the same error on one of the questions. 

“We were kind of straight laced,” Wang said. “We only thought of one solution, and then nobody thought to look and double check our answers with [a] different solution.”

Since the team had to practice virtually this year, they introduced workshops to middle schoolers attending South Pointe. Wang said that he hopes that conducting a workshop every Friday will be a successful way to recruit more members.

“Workshops for middle-schoolers was more of a community outreach that we had decided to do this year,” Wang said via Discord. “Our officer team this year wanted to focus on diversity and encourage more people from any level to join math team.”

To prepare for the next season, Wang wants to ensure the team stays focused and sharp during competitions.

“People answer a lot of questions and our leaderboard is filled with high numbers, but as we approach the second half we slow down and some people may not get every question correct,” Wang said. “That’s one of the challenges we face—we have to keep up the tempo, we have to not lose concentration and make small mistakes, careless mistakes.”

Junior officer Emma Fu said she feels as if  members sometimes struggle to  collaborate with each other since competitions are mostly based on individual work. As a result, when competitions do require members to work together, it can be challenging to efficiently work out the answer. To solve this, she wants to encourage members to interact outside of competitions. 

“I feel like we could probably try to get participation up in workshops,” Fu said. “[That’s] probably something I’d like to do since this year and previous years I’ve seen there hasn’t been that [many] people coming, but I feel like it’d be nice if we could get more people,  motivate them to come.”