FLINT TWP. – Repeat! Repeat! MoPeeps, the robotics team at Carman-Ainsworth Middle School are the reigning state champions from the 2016-17 VEX Robotics Competition. They took their winning ways all the way to the world meet. Can they do it again?
Well, they’ve already earned the right to compete in the Eastern Michigan Regional Tournament taking place on February 10. Two of the Carman-Ainsworth Middle School teams competed at Grand Blanc High School on October 14, winning two tournament champions awards, (teams compete in two-team alliances) which qualified them for the regional competition. All three of the Middle School Robotics teams have now qualified for the Regional Tournament in February, said Leanne Welch, team coach and advisor.
But that’s not all. They also walked away with five of the seven trophies awarded including the Design Award, the Skills Champion Award and the Judges Award.
“We competed in a field of 17 teams including both high school and middle school teams,” Welch said.
The team’s next competition will be in Monroe on October 28.
Six members of the team were part of last year’s championship team and eight are new members, Welch said. All of them are in grades six through eight. They include Lydia Minzey, Parker Oosterhof, Christopher Henderson, Adrien Fragoso, Micah Shamly, Jack Roy, Arryonna Crosby, Emery Walling, David Hackney, Sierra Robinson. Melody Cook. Max Johnson, Haize Gaither and Chase Pelky.
This year’s game, In the Zone, is played on a 12’x12’ square field. Two alliances – one “red” and one “blue” – each composed of two teams, compete in two-minutes matches— a fifteen second autonomous period followed by one minute and forty-five seconds of driver-controlled play. The object of the game is to move mobile goals into scoring zones to earn 5, 10 or 20 points. Teams can also score points by stacking cones on the goals and parking the robot. At the end of the match, the team that stacks the most cones in each scoring zone also gets bonus points for each zone.