Robotics Team Placed Second at Ohio State Championship

Mason City Schools Robotics Team 8719, Quantum Leap, placed 2nd at the FIRST® Tech Challenge Ohio State Championship on February 11th at iSPACE Scarlet Oaks campus in Sharonville, OH. The team went undefeated in the preliminary rounds earning 1st place among the top 32 teams from Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.

As the 1st seed team to advance to the finals, the Quantum Leap (Captain) chose Team 5040 Loveland Nuts & Bolts and Team 4507 RoboChargers from MI to create the competing alliance team. Despite winning in the Semi-Finals elimination rounds, they lost in the Finals in a best two out of three matches, falling short with a very thrilling and close finish.

Robotics Team 8719, Quantum Leap, comprises of Keerthi Sekar (Junior), Michael Valcarcel (Freshmen), Arnav Komaragiri (Freshmen), Alexandra Hendricks (Senior) and Shyam Sekar and Shankar Kalavakolanu (8th graders).

Quantum Leap advanced to the Ohio State Championship at the Cincinnati Regional Qualifying Tournament on January 28th at Walnut Hills High School, by winning the awards in the following categories.

  • 2nd Place Winner of the Inspire Award – This award is given to the team that truly embodies the ‘challenge’ of the FIRST® Tech Challenge program. The team that receives this award is a strong ambassador for FIRST  programs and a role model FIRST Tech Challenge robotics team.

  • Winner of the Control Award – This award is given to the team that demonstrates innovative thinking in the control system to solve game challenges such as autonomous operation, enhancing mechanical systems with intelligent control, or using sensors to achieve better results on the field.

  • 3rd Place Winner of the PTC Design Award – The award recognizes teams which use CAD software for incorporating industrial design elements in building of their robot.  The team proudly uses Solid Edge ST9 Student Edition from Siemens PLM Software which brought the robot to life.


FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded in 1989 to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology.