Iron Eagles Robotics Advance to Regional Tournament
It’s been an exciting season for Savio’s Iron Eagles Robotics teams, Optimus and Prime. They spent the first 10 weeks of the school year designing, building and programming robots to compete in the FIRST Tech Challenge “Relic Recovery!” game, as a member of the 48-team Austin Metro League (AML). Both teams opened with strong performances at the first two league meets, and after posting a 4-1 record at the third meet (hosted in the Savio Gym on Saturday, January 13), Team Prime was in first place going into the League Championship on February 3!
Unfortunately, after opening with two strong matches (including setting the new League record score that was eclipsed later that day), Prime dropped their last three matches against some tough competition and ended the qualifying rounds in 7th place. But Team Optimus fought back hard to show that they were worthy of playing in the elimination rounds, posting a 3-2 record, including a one point loss to the eventual tournament champion. Optimus also edged out a win against their sister team Prime in an exciting match that saw both teams successfully pull off a difficult move in the final 30 seconds, scoring two high-point game elements. Optimus and Prime are still the only individual teams in the AML to successfully score both “relics” in the final 30 seconds in a single match.
Although neither team was in a top-four “captain” position, they had proved themselves to the other teams in the league, and both Prime and Optimus were chosen to join the second-place alliance by Vandegrift’s Quad X team! With strong performances in the division semifinals, their alliance defeated the #3 alliance 2-0 before falling to the #1 alliance (and eventual AML League Champions) in the finals.
Unfortunately, neither Iron Eagles team was ranked high enough to advance directly to the Alamo Regional Tournament – but Team Prime was ranked high enough to earn one more opportunity to advance at one of the region’s “Wild Card” tournaments, a sort of “last chance” competition against other top teams in the region.
So, Team Prime headed down to San Antonio for an exciting tournament on Saturday, February 10, hoping to earn one of the 7 final spots available to advance to the Alamo Regional Tournament. After a bit of a slow start, Prime still posted a 5-1 record after the qualifying rounds and finished in second place, a mere 15 points behind Tau Manifesto from Westlake High School. They joined Tau Manifesto and team Lightsaders from St. Michael’s to form an alliance for the elimination rounds.
After sweeping the #4 alliance 2-0, Tau and Prime were rocked by the #2 alliance in the first game of the finals - but the combination of Prime and Lightsaders came back strong to win the next two games, posting the two highest scores of the tournament, also Prime’s high score of the season! Prime has now posted two of the top five scores in the entire league this season, and they played every match for their alliance in the elimination rounds. After becoming tournament champions, Prime was also very excited to win their first award of the season, the Think Award!
As a result of their strong performance, the Iron Eagles Prime team has now advanced to the Alamo Regional Tournament, which will be held on February 17 at Vandegrift High School in Austin. Good luck to Team Prime as they try to again earn a spot in the FIRST Super-Regional!