Robotics team's second season a success

Aaron Krause • Oct 29, 2015 at 12:10 PM

In the end, EHOVE's robotics team, the Mavericks, did not qualify for the championship round next month in April.

But, you can hardly say the Mavericks suffered a "sophomore jinx" this year their second in existence.

During the Buckeye Regional this past weekend, the squad reached the quarterfinals. The Mavericks were also named one of the top eight teams in the first day-and-a-half of competition.

Forty-six teams from Ohio, Michigan, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Indiana, Virginia and Wisconsin competed in the FIRST Overdrive Buckeye Regional Robotics Competition.

FIRST stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, a Manchester, N.H.-based nonprofit organization. Its mission is to inspire young people to be science and technology. As part of its mission, FIRST engages students in mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills.

FIRST's robotics competition is a nationwide contest in which high school students build a remote-controlled robot that competes with other student-built robots in a series of games. There are more than 1,500 teams worldwide.

The rules change each year. For this year's contest, "FIRST Overdrive," students' robots are designed to race around a track knocking down 40-inch inflated trackballs and move them around the track. The robots must pass them either over or under a 6-by-6 overpass. Teams score extra points if the robots position the trackballs back on the overpass before the end of the two-minute, 15-second match.

Sometimes, accidents happen in the heat of battle as the Mavericks learned last weekend during a meet in Pittsburgh.

The team crashed its robot into a wall, severing the lifter arms from the robot. Despite trying, the Mavericks could not recover.

The second year squad finished 34th out of 38 teams in the Pittsburgh Regional.

"I'm really proud of the kids," McIntyre said after that competition. "They really got a nice lesson on engineering on the fly. What a great lesson in perseverance obviously everyone was disappointed but no one hung their head."

The students had worked for six weeks to design, build and perfect their robot with various parts.

To view pictures of the team, click on this link: http://reflectorcam.norwalkreflector.com/pages/gallery.php?gallery=775

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