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BREAKING: AcaDec places 4th in D2

After participating in the 29th annual Fresno County Academic Decathlon Competition, the eight-member AcaDec team placed 4th in Division 2.

Under the direction of coach Molly Sargent, the team moved up one place since last year’s competition but amassed three fewer medals, 15 down from 18. The team’s overall score has yet to be reported.

The AcaDec curriculum, which this year focused on the Great Depression, evaluates students’ knowledge and abilities in 10 categories: Essay, Speech and Interview make up the “subjectives,” while Art, Economics, Language and Literature, Mathematics, Music, Super Quiz (science) and Social Science comprise the “objectives.”

An AcaDec team consists of three subunits, each containing up to three students. The varsity group includes C-average students, scholastic consists of B-averages and honors is home to the A-averages.

For this competition, students completed subjective examinations at California State University, Fresno, on Jan. 29, took objective tests at Clovis East High School on Feb. 5 and concluded with an awards ceremony that night.

Each year the awards ceremony honors both individual and team achievement. Based on their score in a given subject, students may earn a bronze, silver or gold medal in that category. In addition, high-scoring students may qualify for trophies and savings bonds.

In the 2011 county competition, FC’s AcaDec team received a total of 15 medals: five gold, five silver and five bronze.

Of the varsity team members, senior Tyler Haritzalde earned a Bronze Medal in Art, senior Danny Ibarra won Silver Medals in Interview and Mathematics, and senior Seth Ramirez received a Silver in Art.

In the two-member scholastic group, junior Nick Avery won Silver in Language and Literature, Bronze in Interview and Gold in Music, and senior Jessica Massie received Silver in Essay and Bronze in Interview.

Of the honors students, junior Zachary Diaz de la Cuesta earned Bronze in Economics and Gold in Social Science; senior Ricky Lopez received Gold Medals in Economics, Essay and Mathematics; and junior Gigi Thao won Bronze in Language and Literature.

In addition, Sargent recognized Lopez with the Coach’s Award, a designation which each coach gives to one member of the team.

The team from Edison High School scored the highest at the competition, placing them first in Division 1. Edison’s team will go on to compete at the State Academic Decathlon Competition in Sacramento, March 11-14.

This article will be updated and expanded after school resumes on Feb. 8.

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