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Maui High robotics team finishes as tournament finalist in VEX Championships : Maui Now

Maui High School Blue Thunder 1 team members compete in the 2024 Hawaiʻi Middle and High School VEX Robotics Regional Championships last week on Oʻahu. PC:

Maui High School’s Blue Thunder 1 robotics team finished as a tournament finalist and took home the Energy Award after competing last week in the 2024 Hawaiʻi Middle and High School VEX Robotics Regional Championships on Oʻahu.

Overall, seven of 44 Hawaiʻi teams advanced to the 2024 VEX Robotics World Championships in Dallas, Texas. The Maui High team was not among those advancing.

Blue Thunder 1 team members who competed on Oʻahu were Norman Montehermoso, Dylan Domingo, Wilson Chau and Beckett Hummelke. Other team members who worked on the robot since August, but didn’t attend the tournament, were Jovi Terawaki, Sarah Fahnestock, Sophia Tadena, Lillian Chau, Yzabelle Menor and Joti Huynh.

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Maggie Martin, one of the team captains for the Sabers’ Blue Thunder team, said standout members of the team were Montehermoso, Domingo, Terawaki, Wilson Chau and Hummelke.

Team members (left) work on a robot. Maui High Blue Thunder team members (right) enjoy a break in the competition.

Montehermoso showed his dedication by serving as co-team captain, building and driving the robot.

“He has taken the field home multiple times to practice during winter break and on the longer weekends,” she said, adding that he invited team members to practice at his house.

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Domingo and Terawaki were the lead programmers for the robot and scored 56 Autonomous Points during qualifying matches, making it the highest score at the state competition, Martin said. Domingo was part of the drive team and helped load tri-balls onto the robot during intense matches.

Wilson Chau, another team captain, served as both a builder and coach.

“His strategy for matches maximized their robots potential during qualification and elimination matches,” she said. “Hummelke worked efficiently and swiftly in between matches to ensure the robot would perform to its peak level of performance each match.”

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Longtime Maui High School robotics teacher Keith Imada is the team’s coach and adviser.

VEX Robotics is an educational robotics program that inspires students to excel in science, technology, engineering and math and pursue careers in those fields. Building robots encourages students’ creativity, teamwork, leadership and problem-solving.

This season, the VEX program attracted 900 students on more than 250 registered teams statewide in Hawaiʻi.

The Hawaiʻi Space Grant Consortium oversees the VEX competitions in Hawaiʻi with funding from the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation.

Hawaiian Electric sponsored the competition at the 29th Infantry Brigade Combat Team Hawaiʻi Army National Guard headquarters in Kapolei.

Source: Maui News

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