The Cybears’ Battle for First at FIRST


Isabela Cobley, Reporter

The Bishop Blanchet Robotics Team, also known as the Cybears, competed in the FIRST Robotics competition March 5th and 6th at Glacier Peak High School against other area high schools. This competition set up possibilities for qualifying into the PNW Regionals at  Bonney Lake as well as the Worlds competition in Houston, Texas.


The Cybears, composed of 13 members, began work in the fall, learning how to code and build the robot with basic construction skill training by Coach Kyle McCauseland. With this knowledge, the robotics team uses the skills they’ve learned to cater to this year’s competition rules which include shooting a certain number of balls into a hoop and hanging their robot off a beam.


“We sit in a Zoom call for six hours when the rules go live,” said senior Johnathan Simmons, “we yell at each other saying this is a good idea while somebody says it’s a bad idea. And then Kyle says something and everybody is like ‘yes that’s a good idea.”


“We climb beams, shoot balls and run into other robots,” said junior captain Nathanial Morris, “And sabotage is not allowed.”


It is a long process of designing, building and coding the robot, building , and coding. The Cybears have been meeting after school for at least three days a week since January, working up to six hours a day on the robot. They build each part in groups working together to bring the intricate pieces and specialized knowledge to life.


“The people are assigned to different things such as telescoping the arm, the jaws, or the chassis,” said Simmons.


On competition day, these students loaded their creation into a van and drove off to their destination of Glacier Peak High School to compete against other local robotics teams. They received points based on their standings in this competition that lead into a larger overall ranking for the regional competition.


The Cybears left it all on the battlefield at Glacier Peak, making it to the quarterfinals and winning the Imagery Award for their robotic design incorporating the Blanchet Bears logo.


The Cybears are currently ranked 32nd out of over 100 regional teams and will compete again this upcoming weekend at Bonney Lake High School.