Congratulations 3138 - Awesome Showing in Pittsburgh!

1038 would like to sincerely congratulate our friends on Team 3138, the Innovators from Vandalia, OH, on their success at their first regional! As any FRC member knows, being a rookie is tough and the challenge can be daunting. This team, which is a 501©(3) - not aligned with a school, made up of a tenacious group of FLL and FTC graduates and mentors from five school districts, made it look easy. How’d they do in Pittsburgh?

  • Highest seeded rookie (4th)
  • Finalist (selected by 3rd seed, #2 Alliance Captain)
  • Rookie All Stars

This team has all of the elements that can produce a successful team:

  • Motivated students
  • Dedicated mentors
  • Understanding of FIRST values and programs through FLL and FTC experience
  • Assistance from veteran teams (48, 1038, and 1024 to name a few) through equipment loans, advice, mentoring, and training challenges.

Great job in Pittsburgh, we look forward to competing with you again at Buckeye!:]

Team 3138 impressed me so much that I found it hard to believe that they were an actual rookie team. They simply “got it,” and their elegant, simple yet effective machine was a prime example of this. Their students were also highly motivated, while still maintaining an excellent example of Gracious Professionalism.

I thought the coolest thing about their robot was their ball magnet. It consisted of a curved piece of Lexan covered with double sided tape. It was simple, and effective.

They must have done something right, considering they made it to the finals their first time out.

Congratulations team 3138, I expect great things in years to come.


I agree, though I must include some information some who saw the regional may not know… During the eliminations, 3138 suffered two wheel failures - the repairs resulted in them losing their ability to maneuver. Their drivetrain is a twin of ours; traction wheels in the front and omnis in the rear. They lost a tread on one of their traction wheels and sheared the sprocket bolts on one omni. Their repairs, due to parts and time constraints, were replacing the omni with a traction wheel and zip-tying a tread on the traction wheel. Losing the omni in the rear severely impacted their ability to turn, obviously! This was the cause of their lower performance in the finals, and a learning experience for sure! My guess is they will have a few spares on hand at Buckeye and the Championships!

The finals were not what they could have been - I was excited for a full-strength matchup against 1114’s alliance (including another robot and drive team I was extreeeeemely impressed with - 63), but fate saw fit to intervene. Yet, even with a gimpy drivetrain, I loved how 3138 fought to the end, even scoring two balls while not being able to do much more than drive in a straight line. I also loved how the students rallied around the robot during their timeout, working feverishly yet under control to try and find a solution to the drivetrain issue, change their bumpers and battery out for the finals, etc. Reminded me of the operational organization 1114 typically displays - great things await 3138 down the road.

One of my highlights of the season so far has been the opportunity to meet and provide a little bit of assistance to 3138’s students and mentors during their journey from FTC toward FRC. 1038 is largely responsible for the veteran support of this team throughout their rookie season, but 48 and 379 happily found a way to kick in a few extra resources for the rookies over the summer at IRI, as well as into the fall months ahead of their inaugural FRC kickoff.

I think it’s cool that veteran teams from all over the state can work together to support a rookie team. I look forward to asking 3138 to share their experiences and best practices so future (and perhaps fellow) rookies can benefit from knowledge of their organized operations. It is these types of cross-state efforts which make me optimistic that we can unite all of Ohio under a single collaborative FIRST organization one day soon.

Throughout all my dealings with this team, they don’t know how many times they literally put a smile on my face (very hard to do :wink: ) whenever we worked with them in person, spoke with them on the phone or exchanged emails. Innovators Robotics was in Atlanta last year as an FTC team, and in less than one year’s time, they’ve doubled their FRC student ranks, added more sponsors than I care to note, and created what has become a powerhouse robot and program. Now, hopefully, they’ll find a way to use that Rookie All-Star award to get to Atlanta and compete as an FRC team!

The most exciting thing is that 3138, 1038, 48, and 379 will all be together at the Buckeye Regional - I can’t wait. :slight_smile:

Yep - congrats from Team 2252 as well; you beat us in a fair fight. Sorry about the broken parts.

Thanks, also Nick for the kind words and deeds from you and your team. Ditto 222.

Good luck to you all in your next regionals.

Great job, 3138!
When we played with you and 1114 in practice Thursday night, I didn’t realize you were rookies until i saw the number. Very well designed bot.
Can’t wait to see you in Atlanta!

Again congratulations to our rookie alliance members. 2nd over all pick is a great accomplishment. It’s a shame what problems you had with the wheels in the finals, but hey, we can’t complain, you did great! You kind of reminded me of 2753 from 2009. Simple robot design that excelled at it’s job. Good luck at the Championship.

A pic of the Innovators drive team and machine scoring…

Congratulations to Team 3138 from fellow rookie Team 3193. No question, you earned all your accolaids! Best of luck in Cleveland, and see you there!

First of all, I would like to thank all of the teams that have helped us out with our rookie year: Team 48, 379 and 1038, we couldn’t have gotten as far or done as well as we did without all of what you all have done to help us. I speak for all of team 3138 when I say you all deserve a huge thank you for all of your efforts.

And also, thanks to the other teams that have congradulated us on our winnings in this thread: 1503, 2252, 2614 and especially 1279 for choosing us for the Elimination matches, and if not for our wheels breaking, we were sure we would’ve been more of a help in that final match, but I still feel that our alliance was solid in itself.

I believe that Pittsburgh was the absolute best spot for us to start out at our Rookie year because it gave us a good solid base with knowing about all of the rules and gameplay of matches, and all the interations with other teams. Everyone on our team that attended had a blast there, and hopefully we’ll be making a return there next season. Also the team interactions while matches were going on was awesome, and being the one to help lead the cheers at the Final Elimination matches, my voice was not only full of scratchiness for the night, it was also full of giddy-ness at how everyone reacted to us on our Rookie year.

Also, we have our robot shipped off for our next tournament in Cleveland, and are currently working on ways to improve our robot to make it so we are still a tough competitor there. For all teams going there, I would like to say I will be happy to see you there and to interact with all of the teams again (and maybe work more on my button suit of armor too :D). For all of the teams that were at Pittsburgh but aren’t going to Cleveland, we wish you luck for the rest of the season, and hope to see you in Atlanta in April!

Once again, thanks to all the teams that have helped us get to where we are today. Thanks again!

Marketing Head/Crowd Influencer In-Training


I have to say that I really enjoyed working with you guys over the season; from the early Innovators planning session with your team mentors held last spring at a Frickers off I-75, to the robot demo we did in Vandalia last fall to help drum up support for your team, capped off with our Mock Kick Off in December which you guys attended along with four other young teams. Prior to Pittsburgh, I was impressed with the organization and initiative you guys had… That being said, what I observed from your team in Pittsburgh blew my mind! Not only do you “Get it” in a FIRST sense, you were able to build an amazing machine and compete with some of the best teams in FIRST. And, the more important part, is you both understand and exemplify the values of FIRST. Coopetition, check! Gracious Professionalism, check! Team spirit, check!

As anyone in project management will tell you, the concept is the easy part of a project - executing the concept to make it real is the trick. Your team was able to grasp and execute the concepts of FRC; build a team, teach the values, create a business model, get funding, design/build/program a competitive machine, and keep the exuberance flying through the entire process! That, my freind, is exactly what Dean was shooting for when he created FIRST. In my short FIRST career, the only other rookie teams I have seen tackle the challenges of building a competitive team on par with yours have all been direct offshoots of veteran teams with veteran mentors actively involved. You guys proved that is not a requirement, how cool is that?!?

One of your mentors said something to me during the finals while he was helping fix the wheels on your 'bot, he said “They didn’t have anything like this listed in the brochure!”… As the sweat was dripping down his brow, I saw the hint of a smile poking behind his mask of determination… He gets it!

I look forward to seeing you guys perform again next week at Buckeye, hopefully we will be as competitive as you guys were last weekend. Enjoy this year, you deserve it!

Congrats to Team 3138!

As a fellow rookie team, we know were you’re at, more then you could probably imagine. To start with most obvious, our number is two numbers away from yours, A little spooky. We are currently rank 5th (the highest rookie) at the Virginia Regional and are undefeated. We are likely to win the rookie all star award and go to nationals (if we don’t earn the right the normal way).

Anyway congrats! I hope we make to nationals and get to meet you, it would be pretty awesome. Especially, if we get put on the same alliance, just imagine how messed up the announcer will be!

Hope to see you at nationals.