NEW ALBANY — The Northmont Science Olympiad teams began a month long run of Invitational events with both teams in competition at the New Albany Invitational last Saturday, February 20.
Northmont Middle School finished the day with an eighth place team trophy, while Northmont High School placed thirteenth. Forty-two teams competed at both the middle school and high school level at the Invitational.
The Northmont teams were initially awarded medals in three events. At the middle school level, Alex Polivka and Aidan Wheeler took second place in ‘Bottle Rockets’ and Polivka, along with Ian Underburger, finished third in ‘Bridge Building.’
At the high school level, sisters Emily Hamant and Alison Hamant won third place in ‘Dynamic Planet.’
The middle school ‘Scrambler’ event struggled with a scoring glitch that was not fully corrected until after the awards ceremony. By the end of the evening, Northmont received additional double medal wins in Scrambler. Sixth graders Connor Zechar and Jack Knudsen were awarded the first place gold medal, and seventh grader Christian Hinegardner, along with sixth grader Parker Anderson, won the third place bronze.
In the middle school competition, four other teams of two placed within the top eight of their events. Fourth place ribbons were awarded to She’vaughn Brown and Tim Lambert for ‘Bridge Building’ and Brianna Gilson and Michael VanLuvender took fifth in ‘Green Generation.’ Madison Gilvin and Garret Pearce won both sixth place in ‘Crime Busters’ and eighth place in ‘Crave the Wave.’
In the high school competition, fifth place winners were Emily Hamant and Alison Hamant in ‘Geomapping,’ and Emily Hamant and Hannah Deitering in ‘Write it/Do it.’ Emily Hamant, Emily Kuehl and Hannah Deitering won sixth place in ‘Experimental Design.’ Seventh place ribbons were awarded to James Bousquette and Nick Cope in ‘Bridge Building; to Bousquette and Patrick Peter in ‘Wind Power’ and to Deitering and Kuehl in ‘Astronomy.’ Final eighth place winners were Kylie Baichly and Alison Hamant in ‘Invasive Species’ and Bousquette and Peter in ‘The Wright Stuff.’
“Wow!” said Northmont Middle School Coach Jim Witters. “These teams went into the competition with high expectations, but then we incurred several sets of difficulties first thing in the morning. Luckily, we were able to overcome the setbacks, and we left the day strong.”
The middle school team will host its next Invitational at home on this Saturday, February 27 while the high school team will have a week off to prepare for its next competition at West Liberty on March 4.
The Science Olympiad program tests middle and high school students’ abilities to solve a variety of science problems, including physics, engineering, math, biology and anatomy problems, in complex hands-on and lab events. The teams are partially funded through support of the Northmont Education Foundation and the Northmont Rotary Club.