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Four Local Teams Advance to Northern New York VEX Robotics Championship

By Jean Oliverio, CABOCES ISS Student Programs 

Cuba, New York – Wednesday, January 16, 2019 – Fifteen VEX Robotics teams from across Cattaraugus and Allegany Counties attended the inaugural VEX Robotics Qualifying Tournament at Cuba-Rushford Middle/High School on Wednesday, January 16, 2019. Students competed with and against teams from Pioneer, Cattaraugus-Little Valley, Franklinville, Salamanca, Scio, Wellsville, Genesee Valley, and Cuba-Rushford.  The middle and high school students executed the 2018-2019 VEX Robotics Competition game, Turning Point, which is played by stacking caps on posts, flipping caps, stacking balls on caps, toggling flags, throwing balls, and parking robots.

The inaugural VEX Robotics Qualifying Tournament was held in the Cuba-Rushford Middle/High School Gymnasium.

Congratulations go out to Cuba-Rushford (Blue Team), Pioneer (Sicko Code), Franklinville (The Black Death), and Franklinville (Four Blokes).  Specifically, the Cuba-Rushford and Pioneer alliance were the Tournament Champions.  The Franklinville (The Black Death) team earned the Excellence Award and the Franklinville (Four Blokes) team earned the Design Award.  These four teams qualify to attend the Northern New York State Championship to be held in Syracuse on March 2.

The RoboJags from Genesee Valley were presented with the Judges Award. 

To prepare for the tournament, students worked together to design, build and program a semiautonomous robot that could quickly and efficiently solve the specific challenges of the 2018-2019 VEX Robotics Competition game, Turning Point. Teams studied electronics, programming, mechanical systems, animation, 3D CAD, computer aided machining, web design, and materials fabrication.  An equally important set of skills is learned through competition-communication, negotiation, project management, time management and teamwork.

The tournament was possible because of a tremendous collaborative effort between Cuba-Rushford school and CABOCES.  The CABOCES Tech Support team, along with the three divisions of the Instructional Support Services (Professional Development, Learning Resources, and Student Programs) worked hard to ensure the first ever VEX tournament in the region would be a success.  Additional support and guidance, which was invaluable, came from Veronica Bitz (REC) and Alex Palowitch (iDESIGN Solutions). 

The Cuba-Rushford Qualifying Tournament is one of a series of VEX Robotics Competitions taking place internationally throughout the year. VEX Competitions are recognized as the largest and fastest growing competitive robotics programs for elementary schools, middle schools, high schools and college aged students around the world. VEX Competitions represent over 20,000 teams from 45 countries that participate in more than 1,500 VEX Competition events worldwide. The competition season culminates each spring, with VEX Robotics World Championship, a highly-anticipated event that unites top qualifying teams from local, state, regional and international VEX Robotics Competitions to crown World Champions. More information about the VEX Robotics Competition is available at, and To find out how to become involved in VEX Robotics in this region, email or call 716-376-8323.

About the REC Foundation

The Robotics Education & Competition Foundation manages the VEX Robotics Competition, which thousands of schools participate in around the world each year.

The REC Foundation seeks to increase student interest and involvement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by engaging students in hands-on, sustainable and affordable curriculum-based robotics engineering programs across the U.S. and internationally. Its goal is to provide these programs with services, solutions, and a community that allows them to flourish in a way that fosters the technical and interpersonal skills necessary for students to succeed in the 21st Century. The REC Foundation develops partnerships with K-12 education, higher education, government, industry, and the non-profit community to achieve this work so that one day these programs will become accessible to all students and all schools in all communities. For more information on REC Foundation, visit