Maui News

First win in 13 years for Maui High robotics

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Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.

The Maui High School’s Robotics program won the Hawai’i Regionals, and earned an invitation to the FRC World Championships in Houston, Texas.

“It has been 13 years of constant efforts, nail-biting matches, and second-place medals, but this year’s team took home the gold,” according to a team announcement.

Blue Thunder, Team 2443 wants to challenge teams in the worldwide competition, but is now tasked with raising $35,000 before April 20.

  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.
  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.
  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.
  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.
  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.
  • Maui High Robotics: Blue Thunder Team 2443. PC: courtesy.

The team is seeking monetary donations to get their group of 29 students to the world event on the mainland.

“In Maui High’s Robotics team, everything is done entirely by the students: the ideas, designs, making, programming, and documenting,” according to a team announcement. “The team has a 10 week period to take their ideas to a tall 125-pound robot, resulting in the students devoting over 40 hours a week to hone their craft.”

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Organizers say the team’s hard work and countless hours of dedication would be translated into the motivation and efforts shown at the 2022 Hawai’i Regionals.

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Team 2443’s alliance did not win the first finals match in the best of three series. “It was as history was repeating itself, I knew the feeling oh too well.”, said Keithjan Quilal-lan, but with the constant support from his team, wise words from mentors, and fellow drive team members he knew that there was still a chance.

With this new spirit and mindset, team 2443’s alliance won the second finals match. The third and final teleoperated period finished and the alliance huddled together as the final score was loading.

“Me and Uncle Don kind of just turned to each other and screamed into each other’s faces,” Neill Nakamura (advisor of Team 2443) explained as he saw the final scores reveal that their alliance had won.

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“Tears of joy, energized jumps, and tight hugs followed the victory,” according to organizers.

Now, with the World Championships just two weeks away, Team 2443 is aiming to bring their entire team (29 students and 5 mentors) to Houston.

Their fundraising goal is $35,000 and they are currently halfway there.

Team 2443 will be hosting a rummage sale, silent auctions, and food truck event on Saturday, April 16, from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. near Maui High’s front office parking lot.

To donate and support Team 2443, mailing check or cash to Maui High’s address or donating through Maui High Foundation’s website and listing “For Maui High Robotics” in the donor note will help them substantially, according to organizers.

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