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Recount Reveals Coarsegold 8th Grade Wins Pentathlon

MADERA COUNTY – Following a retabulation of scores, it was firmly established that Coarsegold Elementary School’s 8th grade team took top honors in their division for the 2015 Madera County Academic Pentathlon, despite earlier reports.

Awards were originally given out on Saturday, Mar. 21, when Ranchos Middle School’s 8th grade team were named winners of the competition.

As it turns out, that was wrong, as scores were erroneously tallied at the event that day.

Instead of Ranchos, according to the County Office of Education and Coarsegold’s Secretary Sharon Mello, it was the Coarsegold Cougars earned 1st place overall for 2015. Ranchos actually came in 2nd.

Mountain Homeschool Charter wins 7th grade academic pentathlon 2015Coarsegold School’s 8th grade team was awarded top-level plaques at a special ceremony held on Tuesday, Apr. 14. Congratulations go out to Eden Hussey, Monique Ades, Hunter Palmer, Paige Szbadi, Emily Nowka, Tyler Matyshock, and Cale Sweeney (photo by Carrie Jenkins).

More than 400 students participated in this year’s five-event, two-day academic competition. Math and essay tests were held on Friday, Mar. 13 at SCCCD Madera Center, and literature, speech and super quiz were held at Ranchos Middle School.

Ranchos Middle School came in second place in the 7th grade competition and North Fork Elementary School placed third. In the 8th grade competition, Sherman Thomas Charter School placed third.

Northfork 7th grade pentathlon 2015In the 7th grade Super Quiz competition, Coarsegold Elementary School and Ranchos Middle School tied for first place, and Coarsegold Elementary School placed first in the 8th grade competition.

Mountain Home School Charter placed second in the 7th grade competition and North Fork Elementary School came in third place.

In 8th grade competition, Sherman Thomas Charter School came in second place, while Ranchos Middle School placed third.

“We have a great group of middle school students in Madera County,” said Cyndy Dolph, Associate Superintendent, Madera County Office of Education. “It was very evident today by the amount of participation, great sportsmanship and the accolades these students received. We are so fortunate to have such wonderful support from our community and districts for student academic events.”

Each event contained a maximum of six students per team. Students were allowed to compete in as many tests as they wished. Teams had been practicing for this event since November.

Competition began with the speech and literature events. Participants delivered a four-minute prepared speech on the topic of “Caring,” and a two-minute impromptu speech in front a panel of three judges.

Literature students took a test based on the required reading Scat, by Carl Hiaasen. Participants had 30 minutes to answer 50 questions based on the book, a poem and language skills.

The Super Quiz was conducted immediately following both events. Teams walked into the testing arena to face off in a series of questions on the topic “Earth and Life Science, Including Evolution.”

Each super quiz team consisted of four to six members answering 15 questions out of 30. The four highest scores were added up to determine the winning team.

The awards ceremony was held immediately following the super quiz and lunch, where certificates and pins were handed out to all participating students.

Seventh grade winners included:


Andie Miller Rivergold Elementary Gold
Kai Hansen North Fork Elementary Silver
Kaitlyn Hough North Fork Elementary Bronze


Allena Miller Ranchos Middle Gold
Dylan Tomlinson Dairyland Silver
Rive Prater Wasuma Elementary Silver
Abigail Lodge Mountain Home Charter Silver
Catherine Corchado St. Joachim Bronze
Rachel Lazar Sherman Thomas Charter Bronze
David Portnoff Ranchos Middle Bronze
Kadee Hiatt Ranchos Middle Bronze


Andie Miller Rivergold Elementary Gold
Emmanuel Jamero St. Joachim Gold
Brittany Sultana Coarsegold Elementary Gold
Drew Encinas Rivergold Elementary Silver
Kai Hansen North Fork Elementary Silver
Cyrus Otero Wasuma Elementary Bronze
David Portnoff Ranchos Middle Bronze


Riley Luce Rivergold Elementary Gold
Nathan Pearce Ranchos Middle Silver
McKenna Egan Ranchos Middle Bronze
Gabriella Lazarcheff Mountain Home Charter Bronze

Eighth grader winners included:


Emily Seals Dairyland Elementary Gold
Nathanael Samarin Ranchos Middle Silver
Kylie Farmer Wilson Middle Bronze


Kylie Farmer Wilson Middle Gold
Lindsay Noble Ranchos Middle Gold
Israel Mendoza Ranchos Middle Silver
Stephen Reed Sherman Thomas Charter Bronze


Stephen Reed Sherman Thomas Charter Gold
Paige Szabadi Coarsegold Elementary Silver
Isaac Duarte-Villa Thomas Jefferson Middle Silver
Nick Pierce Rivergold Elementary Bronze
Aaron Hall Rivergold Elementary Bronze


Caitlin Herring Wilson Middle Gold
Branna Barrios Ezequiel Tafoya Alvarado Silver
Amber Persson Wasuma Elementary Bronze

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