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PHOTOS: Maple Ridge students win award at their first robotics competition

ThunderTech Robotics earned the Innovation in Control Award at Victoria event

A group of Thomas Haney students may not have finished in the top spot at their first-ever robotics competition, but they did get a major victory nonetheless.

The high school students, known collectively as ThunderTech Robotics, went up against more than 35 other teams at the FIRST Robotics Competition in Victoria from Feb. 28 to March 2.

READ MORE: Maple Ridge students race custom-built robots at B.C. competition

ThunderTech Robotics founder Matvey Okoneshnikov explained that the team fluctuated in the rankings throughout the weekend, but he was very happy with how the team performed overall.

“We briefly reached third out of 36 teams thanks to our students’ hard work,” said Okoneshnikov. “However, technical issues from collisions on the field ultimately placed us at 23rd. These challenges, while tough, have been valuable learning experiences.”

ThunderTech Robotics played a total of 12 matches, finishing the competition with a record of 5-7.

Although it wasn’t quite good enough to claim a spot in the playoffs, they did earn themselves an award, which Okoneshnikov explained was a pretty big deal.

The team was given the Innovation in Control Award, which was one of more than two dozen awards handed out at the regional event.

“This award recognized our unique control system that combines mechanical and software elements to enhance our robot’s functionality,” said Okoneshnikov.

“Our team is the first rookie team to win it at any FIRST Robotics event so far this year.”

READ ALSO: LEGO robot-building championship comes to Maple Ridge school

The other Maple Ridge team competing at the event was Garibaldi Robotics, who finished with an identical 5-7 record.

Brandon Tucker

About the Author: Brandon Tucker

I have been a journalist since 2013, with much of my career spent covering sports and entertainment stories in Alberta.
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