Science Olympiad teams advance to state tournament

All three Grand Haven Area Public Schools Science Olympiad teams will advance to state competition after the 30th annual Science Olympiad Regional tournament held Saturday at Grand Valley State University.
Becky Vargo
Mar 30, 2014

Grand Haven High School finished in first place in the high school division with the lowest score of 75 points.

This is the tenth consecutive year and the 23rd time in their 29-year history of participating in Science Olympiad that the high school has won the regional event. Twenty-four high school teams competed from Kent and Ottawa counties.

In the middle school division, Lakeshore Middle School placed first and White Pines finished ninth out of 44 teams.

All three teams will continue on to the Michigan Science Olympiad state tournament on Saturday, April 26, at Michigan State University.

Grand Haven High School is the defending state champion and has won 16 state tournaments in the last 19 years including the last eight years in a row.

Medals are awarded to students finishing in the top six places in each event.  Grand Haven High School received 20 medals out of the 23 events.

The results for GHHS are:

First Place - 1 point for each event
Astronomy: Luke Dionise and Scott Peters
Boomilever: Nick Johnson and Eric VanDyke
Compound Machines: Perry Benson and Nick Sterenberg
Disease Detectives: Varun Biddanda and Karl Johnson
GeoLogic Mapping: Braeton Ardell and Haley Kalis
MagLev: Braeton Ardell and Alexander Sokoly
Materials Science: Perry Benson and Evan Miller
Mission Possible: Perry Benson and Nick Sterenberg

Second Place - 2 points for each event
Anatomy and Physiology: Karl Johnson and Nick Sterenberg
Dynamic Planet: Ellie Scholtz and Nick Sterenberg
Entomology: Haley Kalis and Ellie Scholtz
Experimental Design: Luke Dionise, Kaia Hayes, and Evan Miller
Water Quality: Adam Greer and Haley Kalis

Third Place - 3 points for each event
Chemistry Lab: Karl Johnson and Evan Miller
Elastic Launched Glider: Nick Johnson and Eric VanDyke

Fourth Place - 4 points
Scrambler: Nick Johnson and Eric VanDyke

Fifth Place - 5 points for each event
Designer Genes: Adam Greer and Karl Johnson
Rocks and Minerals: Varun Biddanda and Ellie Scholtz

Sixth Place - 6 points for each event
Circuit Lab - Adam Greer and Alexander Sokoly
Write It Do It - Ellie Scholtz and Alexander Sokoly

Seventh Place - 7 points
Forensics: Kaia Hayes and Eric VanDyke

Eighth Place - 8 points
Technical Problem Solving: Luke Dionise and Scott Peters

Tenth Place - 10 points
Bungee Drop: Braeton Ardell and Perry Benson

Trial Events - no team points
4th place, Pentathlon: Anna Jullie, Grant Teeple, Connor Weber, and Emma Wingard
11th place, Materials Engineering: Logan Johnson and Grant Teeple

The high school teams moving on to the state tournament from this region and their points are:

Grand Haven High School, 75; Grand Rapids Christian High School, 100; Plymouth Christian High School, 132; West Ottawa High School, 144;
Forest Hills Central High School, 158; and Grandville High School, 172.

Middle School teams advancing to the state tournament, in order of place, are:

1. Lakeshore Middle School, 2. Grandville Middle School, 3. Jenison Jr. High, 4. Chandler Woods Charter, 5. East Grand Rapids Middle School, 6. Harbor Lights Middle School, 7. Plymouth Christian Middle School, 8. Macatawa Bay Middle School, 9. White Pines Middle School and 10. Allendale Middle School.

Student members of the GHHS Science Olympiad team are: Seniors: Braeton Ardell, Perry Benson, Kaia Hayes, Karl Johnson, Scott Peters and Eric VanDyke; Juniors: Varun Biddanda, Luke Dionise, Adam Greer, Nick Johnson, Evan Miller, Ellie Scholtz, Alexander Sokoly and Nick Sterenberg; Sophomores: Scott Bays, Emily Bruch, Fritz Jaeger, Logan Johnson, Anna Jullie, Brittany Jullie, Haley Kalis, Emily Stringham, Grant Teeple, Connor Weber and Emma Wingard.

Assistant coaches of the GHHS Science Olympiad team are: Eric Dykstra, Roger Glass, Greg Huizenga, Jason Hunter, George Jaeger, Kris Johnson, John Mauro, Robert Monetza, Marcella Morrell, Julie Olson, Margaret Shay, Robert Shay, Scott Stanley, Mike Sterenberg, Dennis Striegle, Dan Tlachac, Jim Vande Waa and Jeremey Wilder.



As reported by the Lakeshore coach, the following are the results for their team:

This year the team shined brightly taking 1st place out of 44 teams in Division B (6-9th Grade Teams). The placed 1st in 8 of 23 events and placed in the top 8 in 19 of 23 events. The following is a list of the individual events and their competitors.

1st Place:
Anatomy: Leah Chappell (9) and Ian Dean (8)
Boomilever: Noah VanAbbema (8) and William Mayfield (8)
Can't Judge a Powder: Leah Chappell (9) and Andrea VanDyke (8)
Disease Detectives: Leah Chappell (9) and Noah Merriman (8)
Dynamic Planet: Travis Myers (9) and Maiya Yu (9)
Meteorology: Ciana Witherell (9) and John Richardson (9)
Pentathlon (Trial Event): Kaden Kar(9), Frank Angers(9), Nick Haan(9), and Eric Moreland(9)
Water Quality: Maiya Yu(9) and John Richardson(8)

2nd Place:
Mystery Engineering (Trial Event): Case Kamminga(9) and Carissa Bush (9)

3rd Place:
Rocks and Minerals: John Richardson (8) and Trent Stegink (8)
Rotor Egg Drop: Noah VanAbbema (8) and Ron Hodge (8)
Simple Machines: Ciana Witherell (9) and Ben Lutz (7)
Solar System: Travis Myers (9) and Trent Stegink (8)
Sounds of Music: Ciana Witherell (9) and Maiya Yu(9)

4th Place:
Metric Mastery: Eliza Lowe(9) and John Richardson(8)
Road Scholar: Eliza Lowe (9) and Trent Stegink (8)

5th Place:
Heredity: Leah Chappell (9) and Ian Dean (8)

6th Place:
Wheeled Vehicle: Noah Van Abbema (8) and Ben Wassell (8)

7th Place:
Helicopters: Noah Van Abbema (8) and Ben Wassell (8)
Shock Value: Travis Myers (9) and Noah Merriman (8)

9TH Place:
Entomology: Eliza Lowe (9) and Trent Stegink (8)

12th Place:
Robo-Cross: Noah Van Abbema (8) and Ron Hodge (8)

17th Place:
Science Crime: Leah Chappell (9) and Andrea VanDyke(8)

19th Place:
Experimental Design ? Ciana Witherell (9), Noah Merriman(8) and Noah Van Abbema (8)

24th Place:
Write it, Do it: Maiya Yu (9) and Noah Merriman (8)

The following is a list of all Lakeshore Students Involved this year in Science Olympiad, they should all be congratulated for the outstanding success:
Felicity Alder, Frank Angers, Levi Barry, Carissa Bush, Leah Chappell, Mason Clark, Ian Dean, Sofia DiLoreto, Jessica Ferguson, Andrew Furtaw, Karen Gonnella, Nick Haan, Ronald Hodge, Nate Johnson, Case Kamminga, Kaden Kar, Justin Koetsier, Kendal Kroes, Eliza Lowe, Benjamin Lutz, William Mayfield, Megan McCarthy, Noah Merriman, Eric Moerland, Travis Myers, Sam Nelson, Austen Reedy, John Richardson, Gage Rose, Austin Rowland, Dylan Shenefield, Jared Shepard, Bradley Sherwood, Reese Squires, Trent Stegink, Noah Van Abbema, Andrea VanDyke, Jasmine Wang, Ben Wassell, Ben Werkman, Ciana Witherell, Maiya Yu, and Abby Zelenka

And from me: Thanks again to all the coaches and volunteers for their significant gift of time and effort; my wife and I are so grateful for the level of support our teams receive in this wonderful community called Grand Haven!


Thank you jvanabbema for sharing this wonderful detailed information!

All competitors from every school, along with their caregivers and coaches who were part of the Regional Tournament at Grand Valley State University on Saturday should be proud. And what an accomplishment to have all three of our Grand Haven teams advancing to the state tournament! Each and every Grand Haven middle and high school student who practiced over the past several months is a winner in every sense of the word.

We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to our Grand Haven Science Olympiad coaches for their expertise and extraordinary commitment to our children. They help to instill positive values in our Science Olympians, and their dedication brings joy and a great sense of pride to families and to our entire community year after year.


If anyone has the detailed results for White Pines, it would be great to have those posted as well; they did amazing, especially considering they were often competing against kids one to three grades higher than their own.

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