Mathletics Team Ices the Competition as Snow Bowl Victor
The Hamilton Mathletics team has won the Snow Bowl competition this year, edging out teams from Colgate University, Skidmore College and St. Lawrence University. Skidmore won the cup last year, so the team is very proud to bring it back to Hamilton.
To determine the annual winner of the Snow Bowl, each team adds up their top five scores on the William Lowell Putnam Exam, the most famous—and notoriously challenging—undergraduate mathematics exam in the country.
Associate Professor of Mathematics Andrew Dykstra, who coaches Mathletics, said Hamilton had an especially strong team this year. “I had coached the students in weekly practice sessions throughout the fall semester, and several students went on to score points on the Putnam,” he said. The students who competed were: Omar Beesley ’20, William Bresnahan ’22, Anthony Christiana ’22, Lindsay Gearty ’21, Asha Grossberndt ’21, Xingyu (Peter) He ’21, Benjamin Oltsik ’19, Jonathan Sills ’22, Jafar Sharipov ’21, Nathan Sobel ’19, Ryan Tamburrino ’19, Jinghong (Sophia) Wang '19, Spencer Woolfson ’20, and Zhichun (Joy) Zhang ’22.
The Putnam competition consists of two 3-hour sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. During each session, participants work individually on 6 challenging mathematical problems. Prizes are awarded to the participants with the highest scores and to the departments of mathematics of the five institutions whose teams obtain the highest rankings.
The exam is so challenging that, in a typical year, the national median score is zero out of 120 possible points.