Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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April 30, 2014

Lockport and Newfane robotics teams back from finals in St. Louis

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Lockport and Newfane’s robotics teams finished out their seasons for the year at the FIRST World Championships in St. Louis, Missouri over the weekend.

About 400 teams from around the world competed in the event from Wednesday through Saturday, which was held in the Edward Jones Dome, home to the St. Louis Rams.

Teams were divided into four divisions, each named after a famous scientist, with about 100 teams per division. The gold medalists from each division moved on the compete in the finals, the “Einstein” division.

Newfane’s 378 Circuit Stompers competed in the Archimedes division. They finished up their events with a record of 7-3-0, ranking them at 26 out of 100, team mentor Bill Neidlinger said.

Although the Circuit Stompers didn’t advance to the Einstein division, taking part in the championships allowed many of the students to network with important people in STEM fields.

“The students were able to talk to some big business owners, and they found about about some internship opportunities,” Neidlinger said.

Ryan Driscoll, the junior who was named a FIRST Dean’s list finalist earlier in the season, spoke with an executive from Monster who gave him a business card and an invitation to be flown to New England to learn about an internship.

Driscoll and Michael Primerano of Lockport’s 1507 Warlocks, who was also named a Dean’s List finalist, were honored with 120 other finalists at a reception over the weekend.

The Warlocks finished 4-6-0 in the Newton division, being eliminated in the quarterfinals. They were ranked 66 in the division, but with offensive power rankings added in, the team finished in the top 25 of the division, team president Jim Rogowski said.

“Our robot did well and we had a great time,” Rogowski said. “I can’t say enough how proud I am of my students and mentors — our efforts were beyond belief, it was amazing having Lockport’s robotics team receive so much recognition.”

Contact reporter Kaley Lynch at 439-9222 ext. 6245 or tweet to @Lynchie17

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