WAYNE, NJ - Twenty-four robotics teams came together at Wayne Hills High School to compete in the last meet of the regular season for the FIRST Technology Challenge (FTC) on Saturday, Jan. 29. Local Chatham teams, the Chatham Cougars and Fear the Gear, were in attendance and battled it out all the way to the finals.

The Chatham Cougars are based out of the Advanced Robotics class at Chatham High School and are in their rookie season in FTC. As a brand new team they have had an incredibly successful season so far. They finished in the finals in three of the four meets they attended and were awarded the Connect Award at two separate meets.

“The Connect Award is given to the team that most connects with their local STEM community. A true FIRST team is more than a sum of its parts, and recognizes that engaging their local STEM community plays an essential part in their success. The recipient of this award is recognized for helping the community understand FIRST, the FIRST Tech Challenge, and the team itself. The team that wins the Connect Award aggressively seeks engineers and explores the opportunities available in the world of engineering, science and technology.”

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At the Wayne Hills Wrap Up meet the Chatham Cougars and Fear the Gear were both performing very well throughout the qualification matches. Their rankings allowed them to both advance onto the semi-finals as a part of the First Alliance team together. The Chatham teams fought together and advanced onto the finals, but had a tough loss against the Second Place Alliance teams.

Due to their performance at this meet, both the Chatham Cougars and Fear the Gear will advance on to the Meet Championships. Fear the Gear will compete at the Meet Championship held at River Dell High School on February 7th and the Chatham Cougars will compete on February 13th in Princeton, NJ.

Fear the Gear was also awarded the Motivate Award during the closing ceremony of the Wayne Hills Wrap Up meet. “The Motivate Award celebrates the team that exemplifies the essence of the FIRST Tech Challenge competition through team building, team spirit and exhibited enthusiasm.”

Congratulations to all of our Chatham teams on their immense successes throughout the season so far. Best of luck during the Meet Championships, we hope to see you moving onto the State Championship at the end of February!