The Northern lights Regional is the first competition of the season for the team. Starting super late Wednesday night our drive team traveled alongside our robot trailer to get all the way up to Duluth. Once they arrived they unpacked the trailer and settled into the hotel getting plenty of sleep for our practice matches the next day. 

Travel fun

Unlike the drive team, the rest of the group woke up at the crack of dawn to get onto the bus. While the ride was super short most of the team was asleep. The one thing these competitions do is ruin our sleep schedules. 

The arrival

Thursday approached and so did the excitement. The majority of the team arrived at the DECC around 10:30 am. We funneled into the stands and got to work scouting the pits. The morning was full of nervousness as everyone was excited about our three upcoming practice matches.

Practice Matches

Practice match 1

Our first practice match went well. Starting off strong when the bell rang, our robot did its auto perfectly. We scored a cube, got out of the community and onto the charging station. After that, we leveled ourselves and teleop began. Our intake was having a few issues so our drivers quickly adjusted. They managed to drive to the shelf and grab two cones to complete two high-level goals. With the work whistle ringing 30 seconds were left before the match was over. Adhi drove our robot over toward the charging stations and we managed to end the match engaged.

Practice Match 2

The second practice match of the day was somewhat different from the first. We started with auto as we did last time. Our drivers then shifted into teleop and drove to the middle of the field where they managed to pick up a cone from the intake. After scoring that cone onto the high goal they moved over to pick up another cone from the shelf. We dropped the cone suddenly after we picked up the first one. Trying to keep our cycles consistent we managed to score another element on the high goal. Talon ended the game with a dock onto the charging station with our alliance partner. We didn’t manage to engage the charging station but we did have some good practice grabbing cones from the human player’s shelf.

Practice Match 3

Ending off our third scheduled practice match, Talon was ready. We did our autonomous flawlessly and began teleop with a bang. We managed to pick up a cone from the ground and scored it into the high goal. After that, we got another cone from the ground and did the same thing. The opposing alliance was playing some heavy defense on us, so we didn’t have enough time to finish another cycle. Instead of driving to place the cone into the goal we decided to engage with our alliance mate in the last thirty seconds.

Practice Match 4

Thinking the day was over the majority of the team was tired and ready to explore our hotel rooms. A long day of pit scouting and running around does tire out a large group of high schoolers. The group headed back to the hotel while the pit crew worked on their final evening adjustments. 

When they heard a call for a team who were interested in filling in for matches, our pit crew knew we were up for it. We managed to get into one of the last matches of the day. 


Our fourth practice match was the greatest one yet. Talon started out its auto flawlessly, we even managed to score the cube properly. After balancing on the charging station our driver Adhi moved over towards a cone for Rahul to pick up with the indexer.  After that, they drove over to score the cone on the high goal. Adhi moved the robot over to the human player shelf to pick up another cone from Vedanth. They scored that one quickly and moved over to score another high goal. Doing the same thing again the time slowly got closer to endgame. We managed to score another cube but the whistle played. We drove over to the charging station and managed to dock and engage with another alliance member.

Pool Fun

Our practice matches went great, there weren’t a lot of interesting matches but the team was able to practice before the big day. Talon ended its day in the pool with the KnightKrawlers; we played plenty of fun games and got some well-needed rest. 8/10 would go again!

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