Predictions Week 6: Battle for the Lakes

As you all so cunningly predicted, APRIL FOOLS. Hey, at least LF wasn’t peddling Bacon in a tube or charging $1000000 shipping.

The final week of competition before Atlanta is upon us, and even with only three events, it will have a fair share of interesting and dynamic matches. One-hundred and sixty-six teams will attempt to win, but only nine of them will be left standing atop the podium.
Grab some popcorn. Find a seat. It’s SHOWTIME.

the PREDICTION:

MINNESOTA - NORTH STAR:
One half of the mayhem in Minneapolis will be taking place here, and this event will likely be slightly more competitive (at least at the top). Only eight of the 51 teams were around before 2007 (and one of them was a 2006 rookie). There will be more than a handful of machines that struggle just to move accurately and effectively, and that will mean that some of the lesser-effective scorers will get a chance. These scorers will struggle in the eliminations, and only the alliances who can accurately judge which teams will be able to translate their qualification play-styles into viable elimination strategies will do well. Human players and super cells will have a big impact, but the winning alliance will have one machine capable of scoring 20 moonrocks in a match if left alone (not that a smart opponent will leaving them alone).

525 is not the most accurate or fastest firing shooter, but they can bang home some shots when they need to. They reached the semi-finals in Kansas City largely based on their driving ability, which will be an advantage here in Minnesota once again. Their capacity is too low and too many of their shots bounce out for them to be a top-tier scorer, so they will likely fall to the later stages of the draft. But their solid driving and smart play could make them a valuable alliance member.

After captaining the #2 alliance to the finals in Wisconsin, 2506 wants more. They had a very good event during week three, but were a clear cut beneath 1625 and 2039 (who paired up and won the event). Their power dumper should be one the most reliable and effective scorers, and will likely translate into more success in the eliminations than most here. Anything short of the semi-finals would be very surprising, and with good strategy and partners they have a shot at winning.

876 reached the quarter-finals here and won Boilermaker last year. Savvy driving and strategy will likely be their biggest advantage, but their medium-capacity turreted shooter should be able to score some points if the drivers are patient. They’re similar to 525, but with a bit more upside (and could potentially find their way into the first round or top eight).

Being the third seed, second selection, and finalist at any regional is pretty good, and that’s exactly what 2970 did in Milwaukee. A very effective dumper, they should be one of the top ranked bots once again. Their fan propulsion isn’t as effective as some others, but still gives them a definite edge and should help them succeed in the eliminations. They should have no problem reaching the semi-finals, and with a good partner they could take it all.

No team is as clear a favorite as Krunch this weekend, who looks to be the top bot at North Star. 79 was limited by very intense and effective defense during the Florida eliminations, particularly the finals, but they were capable of putting up significant burst scoring when the defense lapsed. Can Krunch storm the event (like 399 in Denver or 1726 in Arizona) or will they fall short to a smart well-constructed lower-seeded alliance?

MINNESOTA - 10,000 LAKES:
Just across the street, another 51 teams will be dueling for the top spot at the 10000 Lakes Regional. This time, only two teams competed in 2006, and only one before that. Once again there will be a number of teams that struggle, and a good number of easy targets. Identifying which teams can succeed in the eliminations will once against be key, but so will identifying anyone in a field with this amount of parity. The eliminations should be close, and whichever alliance has the best strategy will emerge on top.

Age doesn’t always correlate to skill on the field, but this team’s number is less than 1/18th of the next lowest team at this event. 93 wasn’t great in Wisconsin, but they were still an elimination caliber team at a tougher event than this one. They should improve, and look for them to be a middle of the first round type selection. Smart play and veteran leadership will be big advantages, and if they can find two capable partners they could be on one the final two alliances.

2826 was one of the top rookies in Milwaukee, but were eliminated in the quarters. Their performance should be slightly better here, and they should be selected earlier in a shallower field, but it will take strong partners if they want to go much deeper.

2741’s robot wasn’t a terrific moon rock scoring machine, but they had a solid human player, weren’t a terribly easy target, and could move empty cells when they focused on it. They’ll be in the eliminations again, but because they won’t be the primary component of their alliance, their ultimate success will be very intertwined with who their partners are.

The Robbettes shooter wasn’t the most accurate when they last played all the way back in week 1. But 2177 can score points when they’re patient, and should be back in the eliminations again. You shouldn’t bank on anything past the quarters though.

MICHIGAN - STATE CHAMPIONSHIP:
After five weeks and seven district events, it all comes down to this. Eighteen spots in Atlanta are open for the 64 teams in Ypsilanti, and the competition for them will be intense. The FiM Standings are fairly indicative of the performance of many of the teams (though they don’t factor in third events), but aren’t to be taken as the gospel. There won’t be many sitting ducks here, and absolutely none in the eliminations. Expect a style of play somewhat similar to Connecticut and Philadelphia, but with more top tier teams. Much like Championship, seeding and alliance selection will have a huge impact on who comes out on top. It will be very hard to find balls on the field during the elims (especially with many alliances opting for three machines capable of scoring when needed), so super cells, defense, and flexibility will all be big factors in swaying close matches.

1918 reached the finals in Traverse City, the semis in Lansing, and won West Michigan. The NC Gears are quietly having a very good season, and will be one of the most effective teams at the Championship. They aren’t as flashy or overpowering as the top tier here, which will likely have them fall a little bit in alliance selection. They could be on a very dangerous 6-8 seed alliance though, which could sneak to the finals.

It’s tough to win an event when you get stuck against HOT and the Thunderchickens in the semis… twice. 326 lost to 67 and 217 at both Cass Tech and Troy. The kids for Romulus have a solid scoring machine and could be a sleeper. Much like 1918, they could fall to the later stages of the draft, but be very dangerous with the right partners (as being on the only alliance to beat 67 in an elimination match proves).

Perhaps the biggest wild card at the event will be 469. Las Guerillas can’t score quite as well as other teams here, but their ability to pin and play defense makes them very dangerous. 330 proved how effective this type of team could be last week in Vegas, and 469’s fan and full-swerve help them excel in this role even more. They’ll need at least one very solid moon rock scoring team with them to escape the quarters, but with the right partners and strategy they could win it all.

85, 33, 68, 503, 818, and 910 will all be significant factors. BOB, who’s as good as they’ve been since at least 2006, and Truck Town have the best changes to go deep. Two or three of these teams could be captains, and the rest will figure into the first or early second rounds of selections.

245 were clearly the best team at Kettering, winning it all with only three total losses. The Adambots were behind 67 and 68 in Lansing though, but they still were on the #2 alliance and reached the finals. They’re very consistent and robust, which will help them likely seed high. Expect 245 to make subtle improvements to their bot and strategy to help them succeed, and to be an alliance captain. In a field this deep and strong, it’s hard to guarantee them much though.

The Thunderchickens started out a bit slowly (for them) this year, but smart play helped them succeed anyway. 217 is cresting at the right time though, and they can score with most anyone in FIRST. Both of their district wins came with the aid of 67 though, so it remains to be seen what happens when they become the focal point of an elimination opponent’s strategy. 217 will be on one of the top three alliances, and if they have another team capable of averaging around 14-15 moonrocks a match paired with them they will be very dangerous.

No team comes into this weekend with bigger expectations than HOT. It took 38 matches for anyone to beat them, and they’ve only lost three times in 55 matches. They won all three districts as a member of the #1 alliance, and 67 will be invited to join the #1 alliance again this week. If they handle each match one at a time, they should be able to handle their business and seed high (and thus have the ability to decline a #1 selection if they wished). They’re the favorite, and for good reason, but nothing is guaranteed here. It would still be very shocking to not see them in the finals.

Awwwwe, I waited through all the predictions for this!!! Haha jk jk

i feel an april fools joke coming…

That’s actually a brilliant conclusion to draw from this. (: I forgot what today was.

Yeah I agree. Definitely April Fools.

Northstar:

Team 79 will be braving the cold to try and snag their first win since 2006. Their machine performed strongly in Florida and they will likely be playing in the last match on Saturday.

Rookie team 2970 has been described as “1625 with fans”. They reached the finals in Wisconsin along with 2506 and I would expect to see at least one of them in the finals.

Team 2169 has reached the finals of at least one regional in their first two years of existence. Their crab drive could certainly prove to be the edge they need to do well in this field.

There are a wealth of shooters in the field including 171, 525, 1816, 2175 and 2220. Success for these teams will likely hinge on strategy. On the right alliance these teams may be able to do well, but as a captain or first pick they may find themselves a bit short on firepower.

Note: I am not Looking Forward; I don’t write nearly as well and don’t have any sources at all to go on. I juts figured this thread could use at least some prediction if it turns out to not be an April Fool’s joke

I am pretty sure that Looking Forward is a better grammarian than that. So, I also suspect an April Fool’s post-log may be forthcoming.

-dave

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I predict a team from Michigan will win the Michigan State Championship. Who needs Looking Forward? :wink:

thank you… :slight_smile:

sounds like something the all powerful Car Nack would say… :wink:

grammarian? is that even a real wordian?

Yes it is :stuck_out_tongue:

My prediction for 10,000 lakes is for 2970 to be on the winning alliance. They (with the help of 2506) gave us a big run for our money in Wisconsin and have put up a great rookie year so far. This team is fast (awesome fans and I’ve been told they may be upgraded) and can definitely score like it’s going out of style. 2506 also has a very good machine and should do quite well.

HOT, team 67 looks like they have great odds in Michigan. They are extremely fast and can dump a dangerous ammount of balls.

Unfortunately my knowledge of all of the teams at these competitions is limited. There will be a lot of great teams competing this week. The new Michigan model may prove challenging especially considering how many teams that state has. One thing is for sure that this week should have some awesome performances and be fun to watch.

Both 2970 and 2506 will be competing in the Northstar regional not the 10,000 Lakes regional.

As predicted, APRIL FOOLS!

The post is now edited above.

Thank Goodness. A great April Fools joke by someone on our team has been building since the begginin of the school year. He got everyone beleiveing he was going to Germany, he told everyone today he wasn’t and now I’m not sure.

Is there anything wrong with bacon in a tube?

I predict there will not be many G14 penalties at the Michigan State Championship.

Thank you for the love looking forward. But I hope to prove you wrong with the late draft pick, by being the number 1 allaince Captain =] Who knows, whats gonna happen, because I doubt anyone does. Isn’t that right Adam?

I guess no one really knows this but we have plans to convert our robot to a power dumper tomorrow (not a shooter) so expect us to score more moonrocks then we did in Milwaukee.

Not only is 2200 not a shooter, we are also not competing in week 6.

Edit: just read that it was a april fools joke.