Members of the Mount Desert Island High School robotics team Pickles celebrate their win in the tournament finals with their partner team, Domo Arigato, from Foxcroft Academy. PHOTO COURTESY OF MEGAN MCOSKER

High School team wins ‘In the Zone’

BANGOR — The Mount Desert Island High School robotics team won big at the Vex tournament held at John Bapst Memorial High School on Jan. 20.

The junior-senior team, known as the “Pickles,” devoted a great deal of time and effort to construction of its robot for this year’s competition, In the Zone. The team won the Sportsmanship Award, given to the team that is extremely courteous and most enthusiastic. They also won the overall Excellence Award, given to the top overall team, in performance and as assessed by the judges. Also, they were tournament champions. Together with their alliance partner from Foxcroft Academy, Domo Arigato, the team won in the finals.

Robots this year needed to move both heavy mobile goals and lighter goals, lifting the lighter goals on top of the mobile goals and transporting them into the scoring zone. Robots are programmed to both operate “autonomously,” with preprogrammed code solely directing the robot’s movement, as well as with “driver control,” where the programmed joystick controls the robot.

MDIHS fielded three robots at the competition. Two of the three teams are composed of freshmen and sophomores. The construction and programming of a Vex robot represents a significant challenge, as there is no set way to either build or program. Students need to collaborate with each other on the team and with other teams. The tournament is set up as a round robin, two teams competing against two other teams in each match.

Math teacher Tucker Atwood helped out this year.

MDI High School will compete at the state meet in Biddeford on March 3.


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