For the third straight year, St. Lawrence Martyr School of Redondo Beach has won the Academic Junior High Decathlon, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
St. Lawrence Martyr’s “three-peat” is the first such accomplishment in the 24-year history of the competition. The 2014 event, held March 1 at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, featured teams from 112 junior high schools in Los Angeles, Ventura, and Santa Barbara counties.
The other schools placing in the top ten (following St. Lawrence Martyr) were St. Mel, Woodland Hills; Cathedral Chapel, Los Angeles; American Martyrs, Manhattan Beach; St. Martin of Tours, Brentwood; Holy Family, Glendale; Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Santa Clarita; St. Timothy, West L.A.; St. Frances De Sales, Sherman Oaks; and Sacred Heart Lancaster.
In the intense five hour competition, students in grades 6-8 were first given written tests in multiple subjects including logic, science, current events and math. The following “Super Quiz” portion of the event featured 50 questions in multiple categories that were answered live in front of a cheering Sports Arena audience.
The St. Lawrence Martyr team won first place in the Logic portion of the competition. Individual awards were also given to team members Svetlana Altshuler (1st place, Literature), Sarah Oppenheim (5th, Religion), Sarah Geltz (6th, Math), Paige Elliott (6th, Fine Arts), Sean Keenan (7th, Current Events), and Matthew Craig (8th, Social Studies). The team placed seventh in Super Quiz.
Captain Sarah Geltz is the only member of the team to be a participant in all three winning years. The team was led by head coach Kathy Wise and assistant coaches Diane Craig and Nina Altshuler.
The St. Lawrence Martyr School Team will now participate in the California State Academic Junior High Decathlon, to be held April 5 in San Bernardino.