MILLBURN, NJ - The Millburn High School Robotics team, along with robot SallyJoeBot, won the First Tech Challenge New Jersey Championship Tournament (“Garden State Rumble”) at New Jersey Institute of Technology on Sunday.
The goal of the competition is to create a robot capable of picking up Wiffle balls and putting them in tubes of varying heights. Since September, the team has developed into a strong competitor, capable of fully loading the two highest-scoring tubes on an empty field. Millburn was able to overcome some mechanical issues that arose during the preliminary rounds of the tournament, finishing the seeding rounds as the only undefeated team in its division.
As the top seed, the team had the option to pick its partners for the elimination phase. The team narrowed down its choices and decided to ally with Team Overdrive, from Bridgewater, and Lenape Robotics, from Stanhope. Both Millburn and Team Overdrive specialized in loading tubes, while Lenape Robotics took a different approach to the competition. They built a robot specializing in ramming other robots, preventing them from effectively loading tubes. This alliance had a series of victories in the elimination rounds, including an exciting upset of the so-called “Green Alliance” made up of the Livingston Lancers, I2Robotics, and Hive Voltage in the final matches of the day.
The team has qualified for the FTC East Super-Regional Championship Tournament on March 19-21 at the University of Scranton, where 72 teams from Maine to Virginia will compete vying for an opportunity to advance to the FIRST Tech Challenge World Championship in St. Louis.
The MHS Robotics team is coached by high school computer science teacher David Farrell and is supported by the Education Foundation of Millburn-Short Hills. For more information about MHS Robotics, visit https://www.facebook.com/MillburnRobotics.