Sunday, April 3, 2016

The Little Robot That Can Do It All

During an impressive match in Colorado, an announcer described the robot as "the little robot that can do it all!"  We'll take it.
Here is the drive team from an angle we don't usually see from the stands.

When day one of qualifications ended at the Idaho Regional we were sitting as the #1 ranked team.  We were not shocked to find ourselves thus pleasantly situated, but somewhat surprised.  And we were fairly certain that ranking wouldn't stand for the final three qualification matches on Saturday morning.
Sure enough, we barely held onto 2nd place.  And the robot was struggling with it's high shot.  They had taken off the long arm for improved accuracy and maneuverability.  We were still highly ranked, but not looking very solid.
As we suspected, the number one team did not choose us to be in their alliance, so we were left to build our own alliance for the playoffs.  Our scouting team had been hard at work and they put together the Waterford Ravens (from Sandy, UT) and a rookie team from Idaho named Bots of Prey.

I was a nervous wreck during the quarterfinals.  In the last two Regionals they had been eliminated in quarterfinals and I really couldn't watch.  Fortunately, my discomfort was short lived because they fairly easily made it through to the semi-finals.
I pulled myself together, and was thrilled to see them make it to the finals!  Because the top team, whom we all were certain would win the whole thing, had already won a Regional in Arizona, if they won again, the captain of the 2nd-place alliance would get a wild card spot to go to St. Louis for the World Competition.
So, our team knew they had already gotten what they'd come for.
That knowledge made it much easier to enjoy watching the final matches.  While anything is possible, it seemed highly unlikely that we could beat this topped ranked alliance.  In all the playoff matches they had consistently score much higher than us.
However, our team and Waterford planned and built a very unattractive, yet highly effective defensive shield made of aluminum and duct tape to put on the Bots of Prey robot.  That was their job-- to be a defender and try to keep the other alliance from scoring quite so much.
And man oh man! Did they deliver!
We won the first match in what we thought was just a fluke.  Mind you it was a fluke that we loudly celebrated as a beautiful moment.  It wouldn't mean too much in the end, because they could easily win the next two (it's best two out of three).
Much to our shock and amazement and joy and elation---- WE WON!!!!
Clark's team became the champions of the Inaugural Idaho FRC (FIRST Robotics Competition) Regional!!!
 It was a close match!
Turn down your volume if you want to watch this video.

Clark and the robot (Seige-A-Saurus-X)!
Much celebrating!
Clearly, Peter was done for at this point, but what a happy day and happy memory for our family.
The team!
The winning alliance.

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