In what Girard FIRST Robotics Team co-adviser Judy Barber described as "one of the best performances of the season," the Robocats reached the division finals at the world championships held April 24 to 27 at the FIRST Robotics World Championships in St. Louis, Mo.
For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) teams were assigned a robot design that could throw a disc. The disc was required to go a predictable distance and height and into a goal to earn points. The robot also climbed a pyramid and held itself off the ground for an additional 10, 20 or 30 points based on how high the robot climbed.
Teams had six weeks to build a robot to complete the task.
The Girard RoboCats competed for the fourth time at the FIRST Robotics World Championship in St. Louis, reaching the division finals for the first time. Pictured after their win in Cincinnati, team members front row from left are: Bobbi Jo Tuttle, Sam Horn, Anthony Esposito, Kelsey Snyder, Megan Avey, Cori Pettrozino and Gabriella Forde. Back row from left are: Brandon Fiedler, Lane Tuttle, Selena DuPonty, Sierra Gamble, Jackie Kenriech, Vinny Bertolasio, Aaron Scott, Nick Walker, Maisey Claypoole, Blake Swift, Victoria Everett, Ember Hafley, Hanna Eldridge, Kaila DeChristofaro and Kada Williams.
The Girard RoboCats have been to the world championship four times since their inception and this time the team was able to reach the division finals.
"They did an outstanding job," Barber said. "We were very pleased with their performance."
The competition was made up of four divisions that included 100 teams from across the United States.
Girard placed among the top 24 in its division, which allowed the team to compete in the finals. Barber said the team was eliminated in the quarterfinals by a team that finished first runner-up to the division championship.
The RoboCats emerged victorious in Cincinnati in March, taking first place at the Queen City Regional robotics tournament. In addition to qualifying for the world championship, the team also won the TEAM Motorola Quality Award. The RoboCats also took home awards for their safety program, as well as the Innovation in Control Award, which is given for a creative robot design component, an autonomous mode.
The RoboCats team was established in 1999 and has competed each year at regional, state and national events.
Barber said the team will begin preparing for next year with fundraisers and recruiting events and will also take part at the Special Olympics to be held May 11 at Girard High School stadium.