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BHS Robotics Team Brings Home Championship

BHS Robotics Team Brings Home Championship

BHS Robotics members celebrating After flying out on April 17th, the Burlingame High School’s robotics team, the Iron Panthers, competed at the FIRST Robotics Competition World Championships in Houston, Texas. Over 33,000 people from over 40 countries participated in this four-day event. And, on the 20th of April, the Iron Panthers won, taking home two shiny new trophies and two new blue banners! As the first San Mateo County team to win the World Championships in 20 years, they are in the process of making history!

Robotics team celebrating Each year, the FIRST Robotics Competition releases a new game at the beginning of January. From there, teams have six weeks to design and build a robot for that season’s game. This year, the challenge was Destination: Deep Space. The objective was to fill spaceships and rockets with playground balls and panels and have robots lift themselves onto an elevated platform at the end of the match.

In early March, the Panthers went to Fresno to compete in the Central Valley Regional Competition. There, they were the first team to attempt a level 3 climb while lifting two other robots, and they finished as the finalist alliance captains, qualifying for the World Championship! 

At the World Championships, after falling to 64th place out of 67 teams in their division, the Iron Panthers were slightly discouraged, but were able to quickly regroup and diagnose their problems.

Thanks to this, they made a glorious comeback, ending in 21st place in the Newton Division. They were then selected by their division’s first seed alliance, comprised of Greybots, Madtown, and the Vitruvian Bots, and they arose to be the winner of their division.

From there, they played against the winners of the five other alliances in the Einstein playoffs. Going into the Einstein round was already an amazing position and their team was ecstatic. Despite early difficulties, the Iron Panthers pushed through with extreme perseverance, and managed to make it to the final championship round. Though they lost their first match, they kept working hard and won both their second match and the tiebreaker, winning 2-1 against a four-time World Champion team, the Cheesy Poofs!

Watch the thrilling tiebreaker match.

Check out this AP article about the Competition: Youth Robotics Teams Inspire Record Crowds at FIRST® Championship in Houston