Saluda Trail’s Robotics Teams Have Blasted Off

Members of Saluda Trail’s robotics teams prepared for more than 2 months to blast off. Two teams of students compete as  First Lego League Teams in a recent tournament held Saturday, November 17th and one is one is now blasting off to compete on the state level.

Members of STMS’ RoboRockets are blasting off to State for the next level of the First Lego League Competition.

“First Lego League is a combination of robotics and project based on global problems and/or research,”  said  Coach Denio. The challenge this year was called Into Orbit. Students were challenged to research a “real-world” problem and to develop a solution for this year students had to research something under humans in space. Members also had to design, build, and program a robot using Lego Mindstorms to complete the playing field.   

In preparation for the tournament, Saluda Trail’s two teams, RoboRockets and Technocats, practiced every week.  Some dedicated students came in during the mornings and lunch.

This year, Saluda Trail was the proud host of the tournament.  The tournament over past years had been held at York Tech. “I was extremely surprised. I’ve been in robotics for many years, and it has always been at York Tech. I was shocked,” says Zakiya Smith an eighth-grader on the RoboRockets team.

Robert Moody, a seventh-grader on the RoboRockets team, said he was “Nervous, sad and surprised,” when he learned that Saluda Trial would be the new location for the tournament.

“I thought at York Tech it was good,” said Moody. “I’m not too sure why it changed to being hosted here.” Moody said he’s competed for four years and each time it had been held at York Tech.

Kenneth Bailey, a seventh-grader on the Technocats team said he was very nervous when he found out that STMS would be the host. “ I was very nervous because STMS is a great school and I want to represent it well,” Bailey said.

The tournament was a success.

Saluda Trail’s teams ended up representing well.  Of the 20 teams that competed at Saluda Trail, six are headed to state.  Saluda Trail’s RoboRockets Team is excited to be moving on to the next level. Although the Technocats will not be moving on, the team was awarded the judges’ award  Against All Odds.

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