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The Student News Site of Palo Alto High School

The Paly Voice

The Student News Site of Palo Alto High School

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Science Olympiad team makes states

Sophomores+Kishor+Rajmohan+and+Veenu+Damarla+prepare+together+during+a+Science+Olympiad+meeting+on+Thursday+after+school+in+room+1703.+The+team+is+looking+to+get+a+first-place+trophy+at+the+state+tournament+April+6.+According+to+Rajmohan%2C+the+team+will+try+its+best+to+qualify+for+nationals.+We+just+have+to+prepare+hard+and+try+our+best+to+get+first+place+to+go+to+nationals%2C+Rajmohan+said.+%28Photo%3A+Nathan+Jiang%29
Nathan Jiang
Sophomores Kishor Rajmohan and Veenu Damarla prepare together during a Science Olympiad meeting on Thursday after school in room 1703. The team is looking to get a first-place trophy at the state tournament April 6. According to Rajmohan, the team will try its best to qualify for nationals. “We just have to prepare hard and try our best to get first place to go to nationals,” Rajmohan said. (Photo: Nathan Jiang)

Palo Alto High School’s Science Olympiad team is preparing for the NorCal State Competition after qualifying at Santa Clara County Regionals at Milpitas High School this weekend.

The team qualified for the NorCal State Competition following a third-place finish at the regional competition and beating their biggest competitors, Lynbrook and Milpitas. Palo Alto High School placed first in six events including astronomy, ecology and forensics.

Kathleen Wang, a sophomore who competes in Chem Lab and Forensics, was very happy with the team’s performance this weekend.

“We’re really close with Milpitas and Lynbrook, so we had to beat one of them,” Wang said. “I was so surprised when I heard that we got third place, which meant we’d beaten both schools. It was so emotional.”

Kishor Rajmohan, a sophomore who competes in astronomy and earth sciences, explained the team’s preparation process, which has required extensive training since September.

“We did another round of tryouts to make sure we’re putting our best foot forward,” Rajmohan said. “We had a bunch of study meetings and took practice tests. As a team, we did a lot of work together and a lot of strategic reorganizing.”

The team is now busy preparing for states, where they will have to place first in order to qualify for the national competition.

Junior and team captain Kelly Tanaka says that the team will begin preparations for the state competition.

“We definitely feel like we have a good shot at nationals if we all try our best,” Tanaka said.  “We’re having more meetings and really trying to optimize our team to make sure we have the best performance possible.”

According to Wang, she will also be focusing on individual practice.

“I honestly don’t think reading textbooks and or studying online will help me much at this point,” Wang said.  “I’m going to go through tests and find out what I don’t know, and then learn that.”

Rajmohan is also looking to consider how to reorganize the team for success.

“Some people can’t make it to States because it’s spring break,” Rajmohan said.  “We’ll probably have to do another strategic reorganization of our team.  We just have to prepare hard and try our best.”

Tanaka is also optimistic about the team’s success and is looking to improve the team’s weaknesses.

“Our ultimate goal is to get first at states because the top team goes to nationals,” Tanaka said.  “We’re going to be focusing on some events that we didn’t do as well at regionals.  We’re really just hoping to improve our performance each year.”

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About the Contributors
Motoko Iwata, Opinion/Editorial Editor
Motoko Iwata (Class of 2026) joined The Voice in her sophomore year. At Paly, she does badminton and debate. In her free time, Motoko enjoys spending time with her friends and reading about current events.
Nathan Jiang, Editor-in-Chief, Webmaster
Nathan Jiang (Class of 2025) joined The Voice in his sophomore year and enjoys playing tennis, learning and loves meeting new people!

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