Four Queens Catholic schools dazzle at NBA Math Hoops Tournament in Washington, D.C.

Photos courtesy of St. Elizabeth Catholic Academy

A quartet of Queens Catholic schools recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to test their math skills against more than 30 middle schools in this year’s NBA Math Hoops Tournament at George Washington University.

Students from St. Elizabeth Catholic Academy in Ozone Park, Notre Dame Catholic Academy in Ridgewood, Divine Mercy Catholic Academy in Ozone Park, and St. Helen’s Catholic Academy in Howard Beach participated in the NBA Math Hoops Regional Competition featuring middle school students from Washington, D.C., Maryland, and New York City on Friday, March 10.

Every year, NBA Math Hoops — operated by Learn Fresh, a nonprofit organization — partners with NBA teams and nearly 1,200 schools across the nation to bring the match competition to local schools and communities. NBA Math Hoops is a board game centered on math curriculum meant to engage fourth- through eighth-grade students, by using basketball as its backdrop. The game is used to reinforce basic math skills, as well as expand the students’ knowledge of decimals and percentages.

“This year we hosted our first East Coast Regional Championship Tournament with students from D.C., Maryland and New York City on the campus of George Washington University,” said Jeremiah Oteh, national director of programs for Learn Fresh. “Thirty-five teams competed in an NCAA-style tournament leading to an Elite 8, Final 4 and Championship game.”

When the tournament came to a close, a team from Washington, D.C., claimed the title, while a team from St. Elizabeth Catholic Academy finished third overall, and first in the New York bracket. The St. Elizabeth team, comprised of seventh-grader Dillon, and eighth-grader Bodhram, have had success before, most recently winning a tournament held at Harvard Graduate School of Education in Cambridge, MA, last November, the school said.

“The Math Hoops trip was great,” said Arianna, an eighth-grader from St. Elizabeth. “All the students had and enjoyable time. We hope to do it again.”

As a special treat, before the tournament kicked off, the students from New York were given a guided tour of the Capitol Building arranged by Senator Chuck Schumer’s office.

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