This past weekend ROBOTZ Garage, the Laurens District 55 High School Robotics team competed in the Smoky Mountains Regional Competition in Knoxville, Tennessee.
After 11 qualification matches they were the #3 ranked robot. As the # seeded alliance captain, they selected Team 4265 – Secret City Wildbots Oak Ridge, Tennessee with their first pick and then Team 3824 – HVA RoHAWKtics from Knoxville with their second pick. Their alliance defeated the #6 alliance in the first round of the playoffs (each round is best 2 out of 3) 101 to 51 and then 94 to 62.
In the semifinals they upset the #2 alliance captained by Team 180 – S.P.A.M. from Stuart, Florida in two matches (83 to 82 and then 96 to 52). In the finals they upset the #1 alliance captained by Team 2614 – Mountaineer Area RoboticS (MARS) from Morgantown, West Virginia and included Team 2252 – The Mavericks from Milan, Ohio and Team 5002 – Dragon Robotics from Collierville, Tennessee 2 matches to none (105 to 75 and then 117 to 100). The victory in the regional secured a 7th trip for the team to the world championships in Houston, Texas.
“The victory was even sweeter in upsetting two alliances whose captains had the opportunity to pick ROBOTZ Garage, but didn’t,” said coach Rob Sheffield.
Winning the regional title is a big deal but what happened next was truly the icing on the cake.
The Smoky Mountain Regional judges selected ROBOTZ Garage as their Chairman’s Award winner. The FIRST website describes the award as, “The Chairman’s Award is the most prestigious award at FIRST, it honors the team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the mission of FIRST. It was created to keep the central focus of FIRST Robotics Competition on the ultimate goal of transforming the culture in ways that will inspire greater levels of respect and honor for science and technology, as well as encouraging more of today’s youth to become science and technology leaders.”
Being named the Chairman’s Award winner would have qualified the team to advance had they not won the competition.
What they accomplished this weekend is known in the robotics world as “Double Gold Cling Bling” because the two gold medals we won cling off of each other as they walk around!
Congrats on the well deserved wins!
Click on the images below to see them in action.