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Brain Game El Portal Pentathletes Enjoy Academic Success
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Spending some extra time in their books, students at all grade levels of El Portal Middle School recently saw that work pay off, with many brining home medals from the recent San Joaquin County Academic Pentathlon.

The El Portal Blue seventh grade team earned third place overall honors in Division B at the competition and sixth grader Kelly Colbert compiled the fifth highest score overall in the competition.

Photos of the El Portal decathletes can be seen on Page A2 of this week's issue.

The Academic Pentathlon follow roughly the same format as the high school level Academic Decathlon. At the middle school level, categories include language and literature, essay, mathematics and science, with the team Super Quiz competition before the live audience. Individual subject areas included written tests for participants.

El Portal Blue and El Portal Gold teams from sixth grade competed in Division A and coach for the sixth grade was Kristi Michaels. Team members were Kelly Colbert, Jacqueline Perez, Maia Zack, Trenton Busch, Farley Moore, John Rivara, Cameron Huff, Ryan Schuurman, Trevor VanBoven (Blue team) and Anthony Gutierrez, Lillian Koller, Sarah Leal, Avery Mello, Farley Moore, Garrett Nebe, Trinity Surinao, Miranda Flores, Fernando Martinez, Juliana Martinez, Morad Algaheim, Mia DeVecchio, Sierra Hernandez, Allison Johnson, Styles Madrid and Armando Mendieta (Gold team).

Individually, Rivara took first in science, Schuurman was second in math, third in science and fifth in literature; Colbert third in essay, fifth in literature, fifth in science; Flores, third in essay; Gutierrez, fourth in essay; Koller, fifth in essay, fifth in literature; Juliana Martinez, fifth in math; Moore, fourth in literature; Mendieta, fifth in ancient civilization (Super Quiz); Nebe, third in literature; Zack, third in essay.

Coach Ruth Gligorea headed up the seventh grade Division B El Portal Blue team, which included Bonnie Head, William Marr, Samuel Tseng, Frankie Bowers, Ellen Degerman, Rebecca Murdock, Kesley Miller, Nickolas Russel, Danielle Trejo, Julianna Antonacci, Kylee Gumns, Abbygail Liv, Melissa Orosco, Piper Rockwell and Trevor Stime.

Medal winners at the seventh grade level were Liv, second literature, third in science, fourth for Super Quiz, China in the Middle Ages; Antonacci, fifth in math; Stime, second in science; Tseng, third in math.

El Portal Blue competed in Division B at the eighth grade level, with coaches Shelley Hesse and Monica Abrew leading students Maggie Casteel, Anastassya Zack, Ashley Pinheiro, Haley Watson, Katie Spears, Cassie Murken, Todd Stanley and Natalie Valverde into the competition.

Bringing home medals for the eighth grade team were Casteel, fourth, math; Zack, fourth place, essay; Murken, fourth place, literature.