General Info > News Releases > Archived Releases 2008-09 > 2009-03-03: MC ASMC Puzzle Solving Contest




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File:  NR-MC ASMC Puzzle Solving Contest
Photo:  Hwei Ru Ong


The Associated Students of Mendocino College (ASMC) held its first-ever Puzzle Solving Contest on Thursday, Feb. 19, with participants numbering in double digits drifting in and out of the Ukiah campus branch of Schat’s.

Earl L. Powell, Jr., a student in second-semester Calculus, wowed the crowd by successfully rearranging the Rubik’s cube several times in under two minutes, with his best time 1 minute, 24 seconds, while talking non-stop about his method and other mathematical topics.  He opined, “When dealing with puzzles, be prepared to be annoyed, frustrated, and psychotic.”
An hour and a half later, Hwei Ru Ong, a senior at both the Developing Virtue High School Mendocino College, showed up; and jaws dropped as he did the cube a few times in less than half a minute with his best time an astonishing 22 seconds.   
Ong was awarded the prize in the Rubik’s cube competition, while Powell got the Brain Bender prize for being an all-around puzzle virtuoso.

The hard-fought and grueling Sudoku competition was won by Mendocino College student Nina Prester, and second-semester Calculus student Luke Gardner won the prize for Numbrix, a puzzle form popularized by Marilyn vos Savant in the Sunday Parade magazine.

The smoothly-run contest was organized by Student Trustee Xiao Hui Lau, also a second-semester Calculus student, and ASMC Activities Director Rose Summers, who is a Sudoku fan herself.

Math professor Deborah White, who assisted Lau and Summers in running the contest, stated, “The best part was the easy camaraderie of the students and their obvious joy in doing the puzzles.”


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Created: March 03, 2009 @ 08:37 AM
Last Modified: May 08, 2009 @ 08:26 AM


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