Top robotics teams from around the world, including teams from the US, Mexico, Egypt, Canada, China, Puerto Rico, Colombia, and Lebanon, battled it out in Honolulu to find the best of the best.

Cassia’s Regional Technical Center, in Burley, was represented by seven students: Aren Anderton, Lisa Pena, Marco Martinez, Jamen Cannon, Matt Child, Ben Mullen and Michael Bronson.  

During qualifications, the Idaho team led by Aren Anderton made it to elimination matches in the seventh seed out of eight.  It was an uphill battle. They had to start the quarterfinals competing against Hawaii, hometown favorites who were the number two seeded team with no losses.

The elimination matches were best out of three. Burley lost the first by one point 62/61, but the second and third would prove the quality, performance, and reliability of Anderton’s engineering, when in the third match of the quarter finals they came out with a decisive win 64/18.  The semifinals matches against a combined team from Puerto Rico and Hawaii started with a win, then a loss in the second round, but the tie breaker was another clear victory 72/35.

Anderton had designed his team’s robot with careful attention to detail, resulting in a very reliable robot. The robot had no hardware issues throughout the competition, something that is very uncommon.

The finals against teams from China ended with a bang. Two overwhelming victories; first 62/30 then 76/17, one of the highest scoring matches of the entire event,  brought the Vex International Summer Championship home to Idaho.  

As a bonus, a smaller second event was held at the same time with next year’s game arena, and an Idaho team led by Ben Mullen and Michael Bronson took second.

Robotics competitions combine the excitement, energy, and drive of a sport event with the academic rigor of mechanical, electrical, and software engineering. This competition was a great opportunity to demonstrate the hard work performed at the Tech Center.

The funds for the competition were raised by the students and donated by locals. A special thanks to the Lions, Kiwanis and Rotary clubs and Art Thornton and others for their generosity.

If you would like to help sponsor a team or for more information visit the teams’ website at

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