The Newspaper of McDaniel High School

The Oracle

The Newspaper of McDaniel High School

The Oracle

The Newspaper of McDaniel High School

The Oracle

Robotics team competes in fast-paced state competition, wins multiple awards


                                                                                              Photo Courtesy of CT Earnest   Seniors Amiri Horn, Justin Silva-Gamez, and junior Akeelah Davis (left to right) pose with their Judges Award.

Back in early March, the McDaniel Robotics team headed to state to compete with their brand new robot. State consists of a new game each year, with new challenges to defeat and new tasks for the robot to carry through. This year, the robot had to place a hexagon “pixel” on a board, drive itself through a preprogrammed code, hang on its own weight, and even shoot a paper airplane. 

The team worked non-stop from September of 2023 to March of 2024, changing and altering their design the whole way through. They would run into issues every once in a while, finding problems in their design and needing to fix them.

Schools all over the state came to compete in this event, with 24 teams of two participating. 

“It was very hectic. There were a lot of teams there,” senior Amiri Horn said. “There’s definitely that atmosphere where teams are hypercompetitive.”

Senior Justin Silva-Gamez also participated in the experience that had everyone hustling around. 

“Everything went extremely fast,” he said. 

The team had to do a lot of running back and forth between the stage and the table. To add to the already stressful environment, it’s not uncommon for a robot to break in the middle of a game, with little time to repair it. 

“There is a lot of fixing as we’re running through the halls,” Horn explained.

The team placed 22nd out of 24 teams from Oregon, which they were proud of. A lot of the teams who participate have funds and materials from past years to work with, but for McDaniel, they were a new team starting from scratch. 

                                                                                                                     Photo Courtesy of CT Earnest The finished robot that competed in the 2024 State Competition is adorned with gadgets and decorations. This is the completed look after many redesigns.

“From what we built, we did pretty good,” Horn said.

However, that doesn’t mean they went home empty handed. 

“There’s a lot of other awards that they give out at the championships,” Robotics teacher CT Earnest. 

At the tournament to qualify them for state, they won: an award for being on the winning alliance; the first place connect award; and a second place design award. At the Championship tournament, they won the judges award, which is when the judges really liked something that your team has done but doesn’t fit into a set category.

The team had a wonderful time.

 “It was very enjoyable, very fun,” Horn explained. “It felt very similar to the smaller meets, just because of how a lot of the community is. They emphasize being welcome”. 

Overall, the competition was a great experience for them, especially with so many seniors on the team. An amazing experience to close out the year.

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Kay Farrell, Review Editor

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