This year, we qualified for the FIRST World Championship in Detroit, as the 26th seed in the New England District. The World Championship was a really exciting experience. The first day we arrived, we unpacked the vans and set up our pit. After our pit setup and robot inspection, we started to check all our systems and make sure we were ready for qualifications the next day. We played a few practice matches and then went back to the hotel. The next day, we played in our first few qualification matches of The World Championship. After our 3rd qualification match, we held the 26th position. Later in the day we lost a few more matches and ended 44th out of 64. The next day, we kept on fighting and gained a ranking points that kept our place at 42nd. The next day was alliance selections. We waited, hoping we would get picked and finally we did! Team 3620 picked us for their alliance. It was really exciting to know we made eliminations. Though we lost during the elimination rounds, we had made it farther than the team ever has. This experience is something that we will never forget!
One of our team members who is a senior also gave a personal statement as to what the competition meant to him:
"As a senior who had the opportunity to compete with Team 4909 at the FRC World Championship 2019 in Detroit, I’m thankful for the endless opportunities this team has given me.
While we’ve always been a tight knit team, this championship was different. We grew closer, shattered our goals immensely, built the best robot we’ve ever built and competed like we’ve never done before.
Not only did we make it to the world stage, we had an amazing run throughout the qualification matches, and went into not one, but two, tiebreaker matches in the quarterfinals of the playoffs. I vividly remember sitting in the field-side seating with our mentor Blake during the playoffs, and both of us were intently watching our unbelievably close matches, until we lost the second tiebreaker by a mere few points.
Maybe the books may have said we lost, but I can say with confidence that was not what I saw on that field. Our drive team took it in stride— while their first move was to pack up, their next move was to discuss with other teams on implementing more robust and complex mechanisms for next season to mitigate the shortfalls we faced this year, ranging from swerve drives to CVTs (continuous variable transmissions). The championship may have ended as a loss, but it’s lit an undeniable fire in the underclassmen.
Coupled with the new resources that Mr. Flood has negotiated for us, including CNC Mills and more 3D Printers, I’m eager to see what Team 4909 does in the future.
From the moment that I was an eighth grader witnessing the team demo their robots during freshman orientation to being on the field at worlds, the team has continued on on its upward trend. It’s for this reason, I’m planning to come back to mentor on Team 4909 to pay it forward."
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