Yeshivat Frisch’s varsity robotics team, the CouGears, won first place at the FIRST Tech Challenge’s Robo-Wrangle II robotics meet this past Sunday in Emerson. The meet featured 27 teams from public and private schools across the state of New Jersey. Frisch’s robot was especially recognized for its skill in picking up building blocks and transferring them to a build platform. The CouGears also had a reliable autonomous code that earned respect from many teams and made them a sought-after partner within the competition.
Engineering and science teacher Mr. Travis Merritt mentored the CouGears, who were one of two yeshiva day school teams to compete in the meet. “I am especially proud of our team, because we are working within a yeshiva schedule, but it’s not a yeshiva league,” said Merritt, noting that the yeshiva school day ends later than most other schools, plus the CouGears of course cannot work on Shabbat. “I cannot emphasize enough what an accomplishment this is.”
Robotics team member Zachary Gold ’20 said that every individual on the team played a part in the victory. “Seeing such a jump from a 15th place finish last year to first and second place finishes this year is incredible,” said Gold, referencing the CouGears’ second place finish at their first qualifying tournament of the year, back in December. “I attribute much of this success to a strong team effort this year. Everyone has a role—from senior to sophomore, from captain to team member.”
Jonathan Sarasohn ’20, who is one of the CouGears captains, agreed. “The most rewarding part of the competition this past Sunday was seeing the result of all of the hard work we have put into our robot over the course of the past few months,” said Sarasohn. “Being part of the Frisch CouGears has allowed me to gain real-world engineering experience, and has influenced my decision to study mechanical engineering in college.”
The next stop for the CouGears will be the league tournament.