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Yankton teams win South Dakota Science Olympiad Tourney at USD

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Students from Yankton High School and Yankton Middle School were crowned champions of the South Dakota Science Olympiad State Tournament at the University of South Dakota on March 31.

It’s the 28th straight year that Yankton Middle School received first place in the middle school division (Division B) while Yankton High School achieved a first place finish in the high school division (Division C) for the 24th consecutive year and 26th time overall. Both teams now have an opportunity to compete at the National Science Olympiad Tournament at the University of Central Florida, May 18-19, in Orlando.

Coached by Cheryl Schaeffer, Brooks Schild and Tom Merrill, Yankton Middle School was first in Division B while Sacred Heart Middle School (Yankton, S.D.), coached by Marcia Olnes and Rebecca Peterson, was second. Yankton High School, coached by Angie Hejl, Robert Medeck and Sue Adam was first in Division C followed by Brookings High School, coached by Kelly Riedell.

Hundreds of middle school and high school students from across the state competed in several science events during the competition on the USD campus. All events for the Science Olympiad are determined at the national level. For the state tournament, faculty, staff and students from USD organized and served as judges for the events.

South Dakota schools participating in the 2012 Science Olympiad included (Division B): first place – Yankton Middle, second – Sacred Heart Middle, third – Vermillion Middle, fourth – Spearfish Middle, fifth – Mickelson Middle, sixth – Madison Middle, seventh – Deuel Middle, eighth – Missouri Valley Christian Academy, ninth – Dakota Valley Middle, 10th – Gayville-Volin Middle. High School Division: first – Yankton High, second – Brookings High, third – Spearfish High, fourth – Great Plains Lutheran High, fifth – Dakota Valley High, sixth – Tri-Valley High, seventh – Todd County High, eighth – Mitchell High, ninth – Madison High, 10th – Deuel High, 11th – Gayville-Volin High.

For more information about South Dakota Science Olympiad, please visit or contact Clark Bennett, state director, at or (605) 677-5248.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News