A team of Hamilton Middle School students won a regional robotics contest this month at the California Academy of Mathematics and Science in Carson, qualifying Hamilton for the state championships to be held next March in San Francisco.
Five other teams from Long Beach schools also participated, including Hill, Lindbergh, Lindsey, Marshall and Powell, with each team qualifying for playoff rounds.
Hamilton’s Team B, led by students Isaac Canedo, America Calvario, Ian Aguilar and Trenton Randall initially qualified 20th out of 40 teams but worked hard to improve their robot before the playoffs began. They joined two teams from Grace Brethren Junior High School in the playoffs and together advanced through the quarterfinals and semifinals, eventually winning in the finals to become the CAMS VEX Robotics Middle School Tournament champions.
The Saturday contest involved a game called “toss up,” in which teams maneuver their robots through obstacles to place balls of various sizes past a goal to score points.
Hamilton’s Team A, led by students Handy Tran, Chris Buenrostro, Cindy Coronado, Arturo Lopez and Ali Ghuneem qualified seventh out of 40 during the six qualifying matches, but were later knocked out of the playoffs during the quarterfinals. Hamilton’s robotics teacher is Ethan George.
“Mr. George is so proud of all his robotics students, who worked extremely hard and fought until the end during the grueling nine-hour competition,” Hamilton Principal Kathleen Cruz said.
LBUSD is providing robotics programs in 17 middle and K-8 schools this year for sixth through eighth grades.