Challenger center hosts LEGO robotics tourney

Cris Ritchie — Editor

November 25, 2013

Dozens of elementary school students from across Eastern Kentucky traveled to Hazard on Saturday, showing off their skills at the second annual LEGO robotics tournament.
Officially billed as the 2013 Hazard KY FIRST LEGO League Regional Qualifier, Saturday's event brought in several teams – including two from Perry County – to compete in different areas relating to the event's theme. The year's theme was “Nature's Fury” which tasked teams with considering their communities and how they are affected by a natural disaster, and also how they can be better prepared in the future.
Joseph Collins, robotics coordinator for the Challenger Learning Center which hosted the event, said this year's tournament differed from last year in one key aspect, namely that it was broadcast on a live stream so that anyone with Internet access could view the matches.
“We focused heavily on bringing in more technology so that others could watch the event even if they weren't able to travel out to see it in person,” he said. “We are always finding new ways to add to the event and hope next year's will be an even greater success.”
Teams from Perry County included a group from Viper Elementary and the Boys Scouts Troop 90. They were among 14 total teams that competed in areas such as robot design, core values, and the team project, which revolved around this year's theme.
The most visible aspect of the tournament was again the robot game, in which teams build an autonomous robot and program it to perform different tasks on a table set up in the First Federal Center at Hazard Community and Technical College.
The team from the Pikeville Independent School District won this year's LEGO league, while Adams Middle School of Floyd County placed second. The team from Viper and the Boys Scouts Troop 90 were recognized with awards for inspiration and teamwork respectively.
The following teams with the four top scores will be moving on to state competition:
1. Pikeville Independent Panther Commanders
2. Adams Middle School Dancing Droids
3. Knox County Middle School Masterminds
4. Estill County 4-H Patriots
Other Event Rankings and Awards
Champions Award (Overall high score)
Pikeville Independent Panther Commanders
Robot Games
1st. Pikeville Independent Panther Commanders
2nd. Knox County Middle School Masterminds
1st. Estill County 4-H Patriots
2nd. Johnson County Middle School
1st. Lynn Camp Wildbots
2nd. Adams Middle School Dancing Droids
Core Values
1. Farristown Middle School Fluffy Justice League
2. Knox County Middle School Masterminds
Oak Hill Wolverbots – Recognized for Gracious Professionalism
Boy Scout Troop 90 Magicka Questers – Recognized for Teamwork
Adams Middle School Robonaut Hunters – Recognized for Innovation
Viper Elementary Robo Hornets – Recognized for Inspiration
Hayes Lewis Elementary & Leslie Co 4-H Rescue Warriors – Recognized for Perseverance
Sebastian Middle School LEGO My Eggos – 110% Award
High Street Baptist Church (Pulaski Co.) Mad Science Lab – Rising Star Award