The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

LAHS robotics suffers close loss in Idaho Tournament finals

Courtesy Kevin Lee
LAHS Team 114 robot at the Idaho Regional Tournament.

Los Altos High School’s robotics team, Team 114, lost 1-2 in the finals of the Idaho Regional Tournament on Saturday, March 23.

“We had a great show going, and one of the robots on the other team broke down,” computer-aided design lead junior Yanai Levin said.

Unfortunately, the drive base — the metal frame holding the wheels of a robot — for one of the alliance robots Team 114 partnered with broke in the final match, rendering it unable to move. In robotics, alliances consist of three teams that collaborate for one round and alliance robots refer to the robots of the partnering teams. The game mode in this year’s robotics is for robots to shoot frisbees into the opposing team’s goal; each frisbee is worth two points. Their broken robot cost Team 114 and their partnering team the game. The opposing teams for the final match, Team Gators, GRT, and Bullbots, won 97–103.

“After the end of the final match, I just stood around for a few minutes processing what had happened,” Team 114 member senior Kyle Cheng said.

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“Any small mistake could cost your match,” Yanai said. “When things break, you can’t get upset.”

However, this didn’t compromise the team’s morale. Team 114 continued to rank high in competitions, such as the recent World Championships held in Houston, where they ranked 7th in their division.

“Although we did not come home with another blue banner, we accepted that our loss resulted from a series of unlucky circumstances,” Code Lead senior Jonathan Liu said.

When building their robot, the team wanted a simpler design, making it faster and more reliable when shooting frisbees into the goal. The simple design meant the robot was assembled earlier than in previous years, giving the team more time to program and test the robot. Team 114 also had a bigger practice field in East Palo Alto, making testing the robot easier. These changes resulted in the robots performing better than the previous year.

After the competition, Team 114 made adjustments and improvements to their robots. A new vision system was implemented so the robot could see the target more accurately. The team seeks to make further improvements in shot accuracy.

For more information on LAHS robotics Team 114, visit their website,

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