AcaDeca places fifth in state competition

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Zoe Kenealy, staff writer 

AcaDeca members had been staying on campus until 7 p.m. daily in hopes of placing in the California Academic Decathalon since November. The team’s expectations were met when they placed 5th in the Sacramento competition over the weekend of March 22.

“We had high hopes for this competition because we had, earlier in the year, received fourth place in our county,” AcaDeca member junior Dan Park said. “We trained vigorously starting in November, but training could actually go back all the way to July. It was hard work, but it was worth it.”

Although each overall score is based on each team’s combined member performances, there are medals given to those individual competitors who demonstrate superior skill in their specific fields.

Senior Daniel Raban received gold in science, while freshman Grace DeLee took gold in speech, receiving 1000 points (the maximum possible) for her speech. Senior Kris Min was named the most-improved teammate, improving by 1300 points since the county competition.

“I was happy to see my teammates do so well individually because I know that it was a lot of hard work for them to come in every day so to see if pay off was great,” AcaDeca member senior William DeLee said.

Although AcaDeca’s training consisted of honing each individual member’s skills, the decathalon called for a great deal of teamwork and the ability to master a broad field of specialties.

“We covered each other in subjects we weren’t the best in. Annette Chang [senior] was a little upset about her performance, but we wouldn’t have had the ranking we did without her incredible score on the super quiz,” Park said.

Although AcaDeca placed fourth in the county competition, the team was able to outscore every higher-scoring team from county at the state level. The team looks at this improvement as a sign of each member’s academic development and hopes to continue strengthening both the team and the reputation AcaDeca has on campus and in competition.

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