John Bapst’s three Robotics Teams attended the second meet of the year Saturday, December 14, in Augusta. While all the teams did well, the varsity team pulled out all the stops and soared to the top of the lists for Maine, as they competed against 23 Maine schools, and others from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Quebec. Their placement has earned them a pass to the state finals which will take place in February at Hampden.
Seven students make up the varsity team: Noah Potvin, Noah Phillips, Karen Noble, Leland Mushrall, Owen Leaden, Sam Lander, and Matt Holmes.
Mr. Michael Murphy, team advisor, explained the competition:
The competition is broken into two parts. The first is a series of nearly 60 qualifying rounds with two teams of two robots competing against each other. Each robot competes in nine of these rounds. Stats are kept throughout the qualifiers. Our varsity team topped the list throughout. We beat out some of the typical top teams in the state, Cape Elizabeth, and Yarmouth among them.
After the qualifiers, the tournament goes to a final round, where the top eight teams pick alliances of three robots to compete in quarter, semi, and final rounds.
The final match was extremely exciting. The first of three rounds resulted in a tie, which is very rare. The second round saw our robot malfunction about half way through and it started doing circles in the scoring zone for the remainder of the match. Still, with the aid of the other robot on our team, we held the competition at bay and pulled out the win. The next match was extremely heated, and we nearly pulled out a victory, but our teammate was disabled in the starting seconds when it tipped over, and it was up to our robot, which is named Pope Urban II, to hold them off all by himself, to no avail. The final match was very intense (it was match four because of the tie). In the end, Bapst fell to the teams from Quebec and Massachusetts by a narrow margin.
The next meet is at Erskine Academy in January. This will be the last chance for our other teams to qualify for the state meet. Victors from the State meet are invited to attend the International finals in Honolulu this year!