BEST Robotics Qualifies for State Regional Finals

The Lee High School B.E.S.T. (Boosting Engineering Science and Technology) Robotics Team competed against 32 teams in the San Antonio Hub’s B.E.S.T. Robotics Competition at St. Mary’s University on Oct. 25. The team consisted of students from Lee, the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) Academy, the International School of the Americas (ISA), and the North East School of the Arts (NESA). The Lee team placed 2nd in the robot contest and 2nd in the overall B.E.S.T. competition. The second place in robot earned one team member, Matthew Orta (a STEM senior), a $50,000.00 scholarship to St. Mary’s College of Engineering.

Team Members: Varun Patamalla (ISA), Josh Singer (ISA), Harrison Frende (STEM), Cameron Turner (STEM), Matt Orta (STEM), Matthew Nguyen (STEM), Aaron Pfitzenmaier (STEM), James Guhlin (NESA), Odalys Vasquez (Lee), Jacob Hernandez (STEM), Daisy Dominguez (STEM), Bethany Garcia (STEM), Danielle Warmowski (STEM), Katy Fowler (STEM), Sarah Mata (STEM), and Jorge Rodriguez (STEM)

Team Members: Varun Patamalla (ISA), Josh Singer (ISA), Harrison Frende (STEM), Cameron Turner (STEM), Matt Orta (STEM), Matthew Nguyen (STEM), Aaron Pfitzenmaier (STEM), James Guhlin (NESA), Odalys Vasquez (Lee), Jacob Hernandez (STEM), Daisy Dominguez (STEM), Bethany Garcia (STEM), Danielle Warmowski (STEM), Katy Fowler (STEM), Sarah Mata (STEM), and Jorge Rodriguez (STEM)

The teams competing in the B.E.S.T. Competition are given 6 weeks to build a robot to meet a specific design scenario. This year’s scenario was to transport wind turbine parts over rough roads and past prairie chicken habitats and then erect them in the proper configurations. Each robot is controlled by a team of two. A spotter helps guide the driver who uses remote control and preset programs to maneuver the robot. In the robot contest portion of the B.E.S.T. Competition, each team plays in six seeding rounds against three other teams to determine which eight teams progress to the semi-final rounds. Those eight teams then compete in three additional rounds each to determine which four teams battle it out in the finals. A unique twist in this year’s competition was that a team could choose to co-operate or partner with a neighboring team on the field to build the wind turbines. If successful in the build, the cooperating teams shared bonus points for their efforts.

Those teams participating in the overall B.E.S.T. Competition accomplish much more than just designing and driving a robot. These teams choose to also create a booth to showcase their team, participate in on-the-spot interviews, and a marketing presentation. In the overall competition, the robot contest is actually only worth 15% of the possible score. The teams are also scored on their sportsmanship, spirit, and their engineering notebook. The Lee team also won the Best Sportsmanship Award for helping the other teams.

The Lee team will now progress to the Texas BEST Regionals to be held November 14 and 15, at the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland, Texas.

 

Team Members: Varun Patamalla (ISA), Josh Singer (ISA), Harrison Frende (STEM), Cameron Turner (STEM), Matt Orta (STEM), Matthew Nguyen (STEM), Aaron Pfitzenmaier (STEM), James Guhlin (NESA), Odalys Vasquez (Lee), Jacob Hernandez (STEM), Daisy Dominguez (STEM), Bethany Garcia (STEM), Danielle Warmowski (STEM), Katy Fowler (STEM), Sarah Mata (STEM), and Jorge Rodriguez (STEM) Coaches: Louann Pundt and Ronnie Pundt Mentors: Janine Warmowski, Jody Turner, Rudy Pena, Erica Juarez, and Fredrik Safstrom

Team Members: Varun Patamalla (ISA), Josh Singer (ISA), Harrison Frende (STEM), Cameron Turner (STEM), Matt Orta (STEM), Matthew Nguyen (STEM), Aaron Pfitzenmaier (STEM), James Guhlin (NESA), Odalys Vasquez (Lee), Jacob Hernandez (STEM), Daisy Dominguez (STEM), Bethany Garcia (STEM), Danielle Warmowski (STEM), Katy Fowler (STEM), Sarah Mata (STEM), and Jorge Rodriguez (STEM)
Coaches: Louann Pundt and Ronnie Pundt
Mentors: Janine Warmowski, Jody Turner, Rudy Pena, Erica Juarez, and Fredrik Safstrom

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