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MHS Robotics Team Rises to the Challenge

All was well, mechanically speaking, when the Messalonskee Robotics Club packed its robot earlier this month in preparation for its trip to Bridgewater, Massachusetts for a New England District competition – but the narrative changed dramatically once the club reached its destination.

“We bagged a perfectly working robot,” said Robotic Club coach Lisa Klein,” but for some reason, once we got there, our robot was not working.”

Such dire developments, while never desired, are part of the challenge faced by those who compete in the robotics challenges that the organization FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) oversees across the country.

Klein said her club members, particularly the freshmen, felt discouraged at first but quickly rebounded, showing their resilience as they worked to find solutions to reboot their robot in time for the competition.

“I just kept reminding them to just take one step at a time and work it out,” Klein said.

And they succeeded.

“We never really got it to 100 percent,” Klein said, “but we got it working enough so we could compete, and we made it into the quarterfinals.”

Klein and her team of 10 students, five of them freshmen, are poised to compete again this weekend (Thursday through Saturday, March 22-24) as one of 40 entries in the New England District Pine Tree Event at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston.

Seniors Delsin Klein and Kai McGlauflin are the veterans on the squad. The rest of the team consists of sophomores Connor McCurdy, T.J Petrillo, and Izzi Luce and freshmen Owen Hargrove, Aiden McGlauflin, Connor Keimel, Caleb Sadler, and Macy Nickerson.

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