WHS math team attends state meet


The 2017 Math Team.

Nandita Subbiah

The WHS math team competed at the Massachusetts Association of Mathematics League State Playoffs on April 2, which was the culmination of their season. The students from the team who competed were seniors Wendy Wang, Zander Li and Alex Briasco-Stewart, juniors Alex Zhong and Kanming Xu, and freshman Michael Liu.

“We did okay, but not well enough to advance to the next tier of the competition, the New England meet,” Briasco-Stewart said.

“Wayland didn’t do as well as we expected, but I think there were just so many factors that we didn’t have control of on the day of the competition. So, I think this result doesn’t really reflect our team’s strength,” said Wang, who is co-captain of the team.

The competition consisted of six rounds: Arithmetic and Number Theory, Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Analytic Geometry, and Trigonometry and Complex Numbers. Each school sends six team members who each compete in three rounds, so that three members of each school are competing in each round.

The six students who competed were chosen during a mock meet at a math team meeting.

“We each did problems from a previous year that we hadn’t seen yet, and then the team was chosen based on the best combination of scores out of everyone who participated in the mock meet,” Briasco-Stewart said.

After the six team members were chosen, they practiced by doing problems that were used in the competition from past years.

Wang and Briasco-Stewart found the competition both rewarding and challenging.

“I feel like the most rewarding and the most challenging part of the competition is working with a time limit… While I was preparing for the meet, I specifically focused on doing the problems faster while not losing accuracy. I was also pretty conscious of time at the actual meet,” Wang said.

“Every problem represents its own unique challenge. It’s rewarding each time I solve a problem,” Briasco-Stewart said.

This competition was the finale to a successful season.

“We actually did very well in all of the [prior] meets. We were ranked 9th overall in total points when ranked against all of the schools participating [in state playoffs], and we got first every time in our regional meets. It was a very successful year in that regard,” Zhong said.

Wang predicted that the Wayland team will once again succeed next season.

“I have a lot of confidence in the team next year,” Wang said. “We have many smart, dedicated underclassmen this year, and I heard the eighth graders who are thinking of joining the math team have lots of potential too.”