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Sixteen Seniors Leave Their Mark on the Seattle Academy Robotics Program 

Photo of Seattle Academy Seniors on Robotics Team


The FIRST World Championship in Houston brought fifteen thousand students together for a sport that everyone can go pro at. Students in First Lego League, First Tech Challenge, and First Robotics Competition all came to the Houston Convention Center to compete in four days of robotics competition. Seattle Academy had one of our four teams qualify for the FTC championship. Team 2856 Tesseract had built one of the most unique and functional robots to play a game called Relic Recovery, which involves block stacking in both autonomous and tele-operated portions. The eleven-member team includes:

Seniors – Jasmine Alvarado-Salinas, Peter Crites, Matt Kelsey, Turner Riley, Noah Rose Ledesma Jesse Walling, and Samin Zachariah;
Juniors – Duncan Kubalak and Corey Wood; and
Sophomores – Sophie Ginsberg-Hayes and Chris Sanchez

At this competition, 2856 was positioned as one of the best teams at the competition, and they made their presence felt. They won seven of nine matches putting them in fifth place at the end of qualifications. Teams then choose an alliance with two other teams to compete in the eliminations. 2856 chose team 11503 ViperBots from Austin, Texas, and team 14219 Volt from ChengDu, China. This alliance went up against the top-ranked alliance which included TechNova from Bellevue and Rednek Robotics, the defending world champions. Needless to say, this was a very challenging best of three match, and it came down to the wire. 2856 lost the third match 608-598, a loss decided by a simple penalty. 2856 was also a finalist for the Motivate Award which recognizes a teams outreach to their surrounding community in the field of science and technology.


Red Shift Robotics started the year with forty-two students and four teams. The season lasted until December for all of the students and covered almost nine months for the team that qualified. The students spent over two hundred hours designing, testing, and building their robots while at the same time giving hundreds of hours in community service through our teams’ outreach program. We are graduating sixteen seniors this year that changed the face of the program though their passion, dedication, and obvious skill. The program relies on three SAAS teachers, but it is really made possible by the countless hours from parents that help in the myriad of details that permeate the season. The program ends the year having set a new bar for success at SAAS. The program is student run in almost every aspect, and the accomplishments that the students have achieved this year make the SAAS community very proud.

Photo of three seattle academy students holding their robot