Carmel Valley Ninja Builders advance to First Lego League Southern California Championship

A team of seven fifth graders from Carmel Valley finished second in the First Lego League (FLL) Qualifying Tournament on Nov. 3 at High Tech High School. The Ninja Builders — John Aste, Christopher Caligiuri, Sean Cooney, Mason Holst, Woocheol Kim, Nathanael Tran and Nathan Wu — competed against teams from San Diego County in this year’s FLL Challenge.

The FLL Challenge is a three-part competition. The first part is a project requiring the team to identify problems faced by a community after a natural disaster and create innovative solutions. The second part is a robot challenge requiring the teams to build and program an autonomous robot to complete rescue and safety missions after a natural disaster using a Lego playing surface. The third part is to demonstrate core values emphasizing teamwork, cooperation, gracious professionalism and friendly competition.

The Ninja Builders, sponsored by ViaSat, now advance to the FLL Southern California Championship at Legoland.