The Fairmont High School Robotics Team participated in the Lake Superior Regional Robotics Competition in Duluth this past weekend and came away with the ultimate prize – a trip to the 2023 FIRST Championship (Worlds) in Houston, April 19th through the 22nd.
The team’s robot was the most compact and complex machine in team history. It included a base called a “swerve drive” which allowed the bot to effortlessly zip around opponents attempting to defend against their efforts to score the cones and cubes that serve as game pieces in this year’s competition with their 180 degree claw. The robot’s small size allowed the machine to easily climb, fit on, and balance the charging station at the end of the game for additional points. Team 2847 finished qualification rounds on Saturday ranked 2nd of the 60 teams participating and became the team captain for the second alliance in play-off rounds choosing Charger Robotics from Cokato, MN, Avis Automata from Chippewa Falls, WI, and Wayne Enterprises of Chisolm, MN, as their alliance partners.
The team lost in their first play-off match, putting them in the lower bracket in the double elimination tournament, but successfully fought their way through that bracket to the finals before losing to the first-ranked powerhouse alliance of Sabre Robotics of Sartell, MN, MORE Robotics from Milwaukee, WI, and Pi Robotics of LaCrosse, WI. Another participant in the competition, Edina, had already earned an invite to 2023 Worlds by virtue of being a Hall of Fame team in a previous season and earned an additional trip to the world championship by winning the Engineering Inspiration Award on Saturday. This generated a wild card spot at Worlds which went to Fairmont as the alliance captain of the second place team! This is Team 2847’s first invitation to the FIRST Robotics Championship.
Team members are Seniors Aiden Nelson and Noah Vetter, Juniors Isaac Sheard, Ben Moeller, Ty Nawrocki, Matthew Malo, Amanda Poetter, Alex Kastning, Jonathan Heinze, and Sebastian Castro, Sophomores Kaylee Nelson, Noah Wolner, and Samuel Grogin, and Freshmen Isaac Stone, Ainsley Malo, Noah Wolner, Jacob Murphy, and Emma Jerred. The team is mentored by Sam Viesselman, Logan Kahler, Robert Malo, Jason Nelson, Chad Moeller, Noah Johnson, Celia Simpson and Cindy Viesselman.