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As the school year draws to a close, five Mason spring teams have memories at the 2016 State Tournament to look back on. Freshman Chris Kim brought fire back into the varsity boys tennis team, and the track and field team made a strong showing in Radford. Three Mason teams made history: girls lacrosse was the 4A State Runner-Up, boys soccer won their fourth consecutive state title, and girls soccer won their ninth consecutive title. Read through each team’s experience and journey to the 2016 State Tournament.

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The most successful season in the history of George Mason High School’s Robotics team is in the books. Team 1418 finished in 12th placed and ended up captaining the 8th-seeded alliance at the World Championships in St. Louis, Missouri, over the weekend of April 27-30.

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The team had a record-setting season overall, winning first place in the Washington DC and Bethesda district competitions, then advancing to and winning the FIRST Chesapeake Tri-state Regional Competition. The team additionally won the Innovation in Control award twice for their innovative web-based dashboard control system, and the Industrial Design award for their powerful and remarkably consistent tower-climbing arm.

After winning first at Regionals, the team advanced to the World Championship for the first time since 2010.

“The championship was a amazing event,” said junior Carder Fendley. “It was amazing to see how far we were able to push our robot’s abilities. This season we have taken the team further then ever before. Hopefully in years to come we can continue to push the limits of what 1418 can do.”

At the World competition, Team 1418 faced numerous technical difficulties in the initial qualifying rounds, but managed to make it up to 12th place and become captain of the 8th seeded alliance.

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The tournament proved to be challenging, fun, and above all a great learning experience.

“Worlds allowed me to expand my horizons in more ways than one,” said Rachel Baek, junior. “I was able to speak with teams from Mexico, Korea, Israel, and Iraq… Being placed in the Newton division, the most competitive district at the competition, really brought out the best in the entire team. I feel that I was able to improve upon my communication skills and people skills. Being given the opportunity to collaborate with teams from all over the world allowed me to broaden my horizons in engineering as well as gain different perspectives on the world of STEM… I had an incredible time at worlds and I hope to be able to make it there next year as well.”

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The Lasso’s popular profile series returns for its third year. Check out the hidden world of rock stars, tennis heroes, and future Oscar winners.

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