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Class of 2016
Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Nemesis Takes Home The Brunswick Eruption Tiki Again

The morning crept upon North Brunswick High School on November 7, 2015. While most people slept in on the lovely Saturday morning, a select many were gathering for a day filled with invigorating challenges, both on and off the field, an evil sundae ice cream contest, and--of course--robots!

Hosted by FIRST Robotics Team 25 Raider Robotix, Brunswick Eruption was Nemesis’ final glimpse at the previous season before starting anew. At the event, Nemesis took the opportunity to train their underclassmen in both drive and scouting teams.

The challenge, Recycle Rush, required teams to work together in alliances in order to obtain the most points for their team. Each robot stacked totes on scoring platforms in order to score points and acquired additional points by placing recycling bins atop the totes. Inserting a pool noodle, representing litter, into the recycling bins provided an opportunity for teams to gain even more points.

Despite a rocky first match--which also happened to be the first match of the competition-- Nemesis came back with a vengeance. The driver-in-training and sophomore, Dahany Choi, was behind the controls. The strategy: building at least two six-tote stacks, each one topped with a pool noodle in a recycling can.

“I had a blast driving our competition robot at a real competition. Working with other teams to most efficiently stack and play the game was such a revelation. This was what robotics is all about,” first-time driver and sophomore Dahany Choi commented.

The team had two alternating human players, junior Michael Cocciolillo and senior and Build Executive Samantha Young, feeding totes into the robot.

New members deceived a taste of scouting in the stands, one of the most crucial parts of any FIRST Robotics competition, because the information the students collected would determine what teams they chose for alliances in the final rounds of the competition.  

Finishing sixth, Nemesis joined the first alliance with teams 2607, The Fighting RoboVikings from Warminster, PA; 3142, Aperture from Newtown, NJ; and 4653, Ironmen Robotics from Ramsey, NJ, in the elimination matches. The alliance could not have been a better choice for Nemesis, having had an amazing first match in the elimination rounds putting them in second place in the competition, with still more rounds to come.

The second playoff match arrived. Nemesis, Aperture and The Fighting RoboVikings readied and soon began. There were some faults, including a toppled stack, however by the end of the match four tall stacks topped with cans and noodles stood clearly on the field.

Nemesis waited with bated breath for the results. “We will be replaying the match due to a field fault”, the announcer stated.

The team was not deterred. In fact, the rematch was even more intense than the original. The robots of the first-seeded alliance moved seamlessly, efficiently creating and topping each other's stacks. The high-scoring of all three teams paved the first alliance’s path into the semifinals.

Nemesis was a force to be reckoned with, playing strongly through the second and third semifinal matches and therefore securing a spot in the finals.

At last, the moment came. Finals. All Nemesis’ alliance needed to emerge victorious were two more wins.

The first final match was rough. The first alliance fumbled and it would be tough to come back. Nemesis had to win the next two matches in a row to come out victorious.

“I was confident that our alliance would do well; all of our teams seemed to mesh together amazingly,” said Michael Cocciolillo, sophomore and member of the Brunswick Eruption Drive Team.  

Nemesis’ alliance did come back …by the skin of their teeth, a 10-point difference in final scores. But it was enough and a tiebreaker match began. Whoever won this match would win Brunswick Eruption 2015.

Both alliances competed fiercely, but with a final score of 194 to 90, Nemesis’ alliance took home the tiki trophy.

“This is my final Brunswick Eruption and to experience victory here once again is an amazing feeling. I can’t wait for the season to start when we’ll hopefully be able to experience even more success,” enthused senior and Chief of Operations Juhi Rajgopal.  

At the end of the day, Nemesis returned home victorious with yet another Brunswick Eruption win under their belts, a great way to start their new season and give their new members a taste of a true robotics competition.

Don't forget to join Nemesis at the Hatboro-Horsham District Competition at Hatboro-Horsham High School in Horsham, PA on March 3 and 4, 2016 to support the team as it kicks off the 2016 season!