The five-member Westchester High School team finished tenth in the annual Science Bowl Regional Competition February 28th.

Thirty-three Los Angeles schools sent 54 teams to the prestigious all-day annual event. Alexander August-Schmidt, Tatiana August-Schmidt, Patrick Bennett, Ivan Cid and Sureewan Jantaranima represented Westchester in the competition that included a variety of gifted magnet and private schools, including the eventual winner, North Hollywood Highly Gifted Magnet.

Westchester, which completed the first round of competition with a 4-2 record, was tied for tenth place and lost a tie-breaker without reaching the double elimination buzzer competition.

The 38 teams not in the top 16, including Westchester, were sent to a hands-on competition, in which Westchester finished second. The team then went to the televised awards ceremony and each of the students received a $200 gift certificate.

“Our students performed with great character against many outstanding experienced competitors,” said teacher Sherman Lambert, who was the team’s coach. “During the morning round, our team twice came back from a halftime deficit to win the match at the final buzzer. In the afternoon our team overcame the disappointment of just missing the elimination competition and applied all their skills to the hands-on competition.”

It is worth noting that four of the five team members are juniors who have not taken a course in physics, astronomy or earth science. Congratulations to Westchester’s Science Bowl Team!

NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL’S GENERAL MEETING

The Neighborhood Council of Westchester-Playa del Rey will hold its Spring 2009 General Meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 7th at the Westchester Senior Center, 8740 Lincoln Blvd.

This is an opportunity for all community stakeholders, including residents, business owners and employees and others who are active in the Westchester, Playa del Rey and Playa Vista communities to join the Neighborhood Council board in an open forum discussion.

The April meeting will focus on community improvement projects for the area.ÝThe Neighborhood Council is funded by tax dollars through the City of Los Angeles and is seeking community input to help guide the projects that it will undertake and fund in the future.

EAGLE SCOUT PROJECT REVAMPS NIELSEN PARK

Thanks to Elliott Neiwirth and a band of local Boy Scouts who worked with him on his Eagle Scout project, Carl E. Nielsen Youth Park got a much-needed facelift.

Neiwirth’s project included removal of graffiti found on the walls of the baseball dugouts, repair and replacement of broken equipment racks and repair of the fencing in front of the dugouts. He also placed curbs between the diamond’s bullpen and dugout to prevent washout of dirt into the dugouts.

All materials, including paint, concrete, and fence materials, were donated and/or sponsored by community businesses. Sponsors included Playa Vista, Martin Integrated and Arias, Ozzello & Gignac, while Naylor Paints donated paint, Home Depot provided discounts and John Silva of JS Concrete Services donated demolition and concrete work.

Neiwirth and the Boy Scouts from Troop 927 provided the majority of the labor, and meals for the volunteers were sponsored by various businesses and families, including Pizzarito Restaurant, Hacienda Del Rey and Neil and Debi Wong.

LOCAL TEAMS EARN LACROSSE TITLES

Two Westchester youth lacrosse teams recently earned league titles in the West L.A. Lacrosse League.

The Westchester Hoyas, composed of second-to fourth-graders, won their division as did the Westchester Lions, a team of fifth- and sixth-graders. Congratulations to the Hoyas and Lions! Hoya team members are Elijah Hayes, Gabriel Chaine, Joey Theuer, Maxwell Keith, Nicholas Mohler, Sam Broberg, Sullivan Nightingall, Weston Priestly, Ramzy Latif and Jack Carolan. The coach is Dan Mohler and Bill Priestly is the manager.

Lion team members are Drew Bonney, Zac Brodney, Connor Jongeward, Jack Lutzky, Max Neblina, Kyle Messinger, Matt Quaschnick and Preston Quaschnick, and their coaches are Mark Jongewaard and Greg Sharron.

The athletes all received trophies at a March 8th awards celebration.

S-P-E-L-L YOUR WAY TO A TITLE

If you’ve ever wanted to prove you’re the best Scrabble player in town, here’s your chance.

The Rotary Club of Westchester will hold its annual Westchester Scrabble Challenge on Saturday, March 21st at the Westchester Family YMCA Annex (formerly the Westchester Woman’s Club) at 8020 Alverstone Ave.

The three-game tournament, which is open to players of all ages, will include two divisions — one for club players and one for casual players. Registration will begin at 5:30 p.m. and games will start at 6 p.m. The Official SCRABBLER Players Dictionary, Fourth Edition will be used.

The entry fee is $10 per person, if received before March 21st, and $15 per person at the door. Proceeds will go to benefit the Jim Hill Youth Scholarship Fund.

The winner will have his or her name engraved on the perpetual Scrabble Cup, as well as a gift certificate for dinner and other prizes.

Information, tournament director Edgar Saenz at (310) 753-1668 or Esaenz@ca.rr.com/. Checks, made payable to the Westchester Rotary Foundation, may be mailed to 7357 W. 85th St., Westchester, CA 90045.

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