Monster Mash: A Frightfully Good Time In Lead Vegas
Leadville Students Harvest Lessons from Robots
On Saturday, October 22nd, the Lake County Robotics team headed to Denver to compete in the Front Range BEST robotics competition. The team, consisting of Libby Smeltzer, Zach Coffin, Christian Torsell, and the robot they had designed and built in the previous six weeks, named Scrappy, were excited to compete against nineteen other schools.
This year’s game consisted of a farming theme where teams had three minutes to collect tomatoes, plant seeds, gather corn, harvest lettuce, turn the water on, and put pigs into their pen. Teams competed four at a time on the game field, starting with a seeding round where each team competed eight times.
The Panthers had a strong start in the seeding rounds, and they soon found themselves fighting for a spot in the top seven. The top seven teams were guaranteed a spot in the semi-final round. The high point came on match three, when Zach drove Scrappy to a score of 220 points. As the final seeding rounds came to a close, it was clear that the 7th spot was in reach.
Despite a final round score of 180, the second highest of the day for the Panthers, the team ended up 10 points shy of 7th place with 830 total points. The trio waited patiently to see if the score from their Project Engineering Notebook, documentation of their weeks worth of engineering, would earn them a spot in the wild card round. After a tense 30 minutes, they found out that their hard work on the notebook had paid off and they were in the wildcard round.
Excitedly, they geared up Scrappy again. The wildcard round was a four-team competition where only winner moved onto the semifinal. Zach piloted Scrappy confidently, collecting six tomatoes in the first two minutes. With thirty seconds left, he managed to turn the water valve on and score another 100 points, making the total score 220 points, enough to take the victory and move onto the semifinals. They shared a quick celebration and then had to prep Scrappy for the semifinals.
During the three rounds of the semifinals, the Panthers held their own with the best robots of the competition, placing 8th with 340 points, only 10 points out of 7th place. The team was thrilled with an 8th place finish, especially since they were the smallest team at the competition and had no members who had ever competed in a robotics competition before.
Their coach, Karl Remsen, was pleased with the performance, saying, “Libby, Zach, and Christian represented Lake County well today. Other schools were particularly impressed with their robot’s ability to harvest tomatoes, which they did better than any other school at the competition.”
The team was supported in part by a grant from the Freeport-McMoran Corporation, and Lake County High School appreciates their support of STEM education. Other sponsors or volunteer coaches for engineering at Lake County are always welcome. This spring, engineering students at Lake County are hoping to design and build a solar powered racing car, and next fall they will be hoping to improve on this performance in next year’s BEST robotics competition.
Leadville Student Cyclists Wrap Up Season with on Top
By Leadville Racing Coach Bruce Kelly
The Colorado High School State Championship weekend started off with the annual awards banquet and Leadville Racing Senior Legacy rider Cheyenne Mendoza was recognized as most improved Varsity rider for 2016. A well deserved award for one of the most outstanding riders in the state.
The State Championships began with the Freshman Boys race with Leadville Racings Matt Koch riding hard and finishing in 86th place. Next up was the large boys JV race with 146 riders. Cain Gipson finished off his season with a 40th place finish followed by Brayan Reveles in 70th place. The last race of the day was the boys Varsity. Both Cheyenne Mendoza and Brandon Hanson rode with the lead packs for the first lap as the race progressed the course and the dust began to take its toll on riders. Brandon had his best race of the season finishing in 21st overall while Cheyenne not having his beat day hung in there and finished 32nd. Congrats to all 5 of these riders for a great season, the team finished 19th overall out of 44, this without having any female riders to help add to their points total. The program will miss not having Cain, Cheyenne, and Brandon next year and wish them the best for their future on and off the bike!