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Middle Schoolers from Julian and Brooks became 2017 Battle of the Bots Tournament Champions before a crowd 300 strong last Saturday after battling teams from Berwyn, Elmwood Park, Riverside, Elmhurst, Palatine, and Skokie. With the win, they’ve qualified to move on to the Il VEX Robotics Middle School State Championship on March 4, which will be hosted in Oak Park for the first time at Julian.

Young engineers from throughout the region competed in two 12-by-12-foot arenas using robots their teams designed, built and programmed to play Starstruck, this year’s VEX Robotics Challenge game. After 38 teams had competed in 57 rounds, eight alliances, each made up of three teams, headed into the Quarterfinals. Those teams then competed for one of the two spots in the Semifinals with the final two alliances battling it out for a guaranteed slot at the state championship.

The vibe in the arenas got intense and exciting during the Quarterfinals when the 7th ranked alliance beat the 2nd ranked alliance. The battle continued into the Semifinals, where the 7th ranked alliance and the 3rd ranked alliance had to fight through 3 matches until the 3rd ranked alliance finally won. It was this three-team alliance—made up of teams from Brooks, Julian and Hauser Junior High School—that was ultimately victorious in the Finals and became the Tournament Champions.

OPEF was very honored to have Senator Don Harmon join us to present trophies and congratulate the teams. The three Tournament Champion teams—including Theory 4 from Brooks and the Gladiators from Julian—qualified for the Illinois Middle School VEX Robotics State Championship, which will be held at Julian Middle School on March 4th.

Photos of the tournament courtesy of Paul Goyette.

OPEF VEX Robotics winners from the Battle of the Bots:

Tournament Champions

7183C Theory 4 (Brooks): Stellan Karim, Liam Lesiowski, Tej Menon, Caden Scheuring

7480G Gladiators (Julian): Ryan Atkinson, Callum Dickel, Andrew Kitzman, Matiss Simitz, Nate Singer, Emmet Szewczyk

Tournament Finalists

7183A Vitamin A (Brooks): Cole Hunnewell, Matthew Irving, Aiden Klass, Charlie Matyas

7480K Kryptonite (Julian): Jacob Drews, Emily Hsieh, Senja Peters, Mia Rossback, Sasm Warzecha, Xander Wells

Robot Skills Winner

7480K Kryptonite (Julian): Jacob Drews, Emily Hsieh, Senja Peters, Mia Rossback, Sasm Warzecha, Xander Wells