The Alpha Dogs

Team 4946 - The Journey Is The Prize

History of the Alpha Dogs

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Our 2016 Robot, Sir Cyr

Our 2016 Robot, Sir Cyr

2019 Destination: Deep Space

In 2019, our first event was the Durham College event. We finished 16th out of 40 teams, with a 5-7 record. We were the first pick of the 4th alliance, but were sadly eliminated in the quarter finals. However, we did win the Entrepreneurship Award for our business plan.

At our second event, North Bay, we finished 3rd overall, with an 8-3 record. We were the captain of the 3rd alliance, and made it to the semi finals, losing to the eventual winners. We also won the Innovation in Control Award.

After these two qualifying tournaments, The Alpha Dogs had performed well enough to qualify for our 3rd straight Provincial Championship, as one of the top 80 teams in the province. The Alpha Dogs played in the Science division, finishing 6th in the division with a 7-5 record. We joined the 4th alliance, and made it to the semi finals where we were eliminated by the eventual provincial champions. We also won the Industrial Design Award. With this performance, we were able to qualify for our 3rd world championships, in 3 years, and our 4th overall.

The Alpha Dogs were placed into the Daly division, and ranked 22nd out of 80 teams, and were the first pick of the 6th alliance. We were sadly eliminated in the quarterfinals, ending another great season.

On top of the team’s performance, one team member earned a huge individual award. Param Upadhyay, a leader of our design and awards sub teams, won the Dean’s List award at the world championship, an honour bestowed onto only 10 FRC students a year. He’s the first Canadian to win the award since 2017.


In 2018, we first competed at the Durham College event, as we looked to defend our title. We finished the qualifications in 3rd place of 40 teams, with a 15-3 record. The Alpha Dogs were the captains of the 2nd alliance, and went all the way until we lost in the finals. We won the quality award for the robust design of Retro Reynolds.

At the York University event, we were the alliance captains of the 6th alliance, after ranking 9th from the qualification matches. We made it to the quarter finals, and won the Innovation in Control award for our autonomous application that allowed us to draw out various autos on a virtual field. The Alpha Dogs applied for the prestigious Chairman's award for the first time at this event. It is a difficult award to win, but we are striving for it in the coming years.

The Alpha Dogs did well enough to qualify for the Ontario Provincial Championships from April 12-14. At the Hershey Center, we seeded 9th of 40 teams in the Technology division, and were the 5th alliance captains, but unfortunately we were eliminated in the quarter finals. The Alpha Dogs won their first ever business award, winning the Entrepreneurship award for the technology division. However, we were ranked 23rd of 156 teams in Ontario, and that qualified for the World Championship - for the second year in a row!

In the early morning of April 25th, the Alpha Dogs climbed aboard a coach bus and made the long trip to Detroit, MI, for the FIRST Detroit Championship. The Alpha Dogs competed in the Darwin Division on their four-day trip. After 10 qualification matches, we had a stellar 9-1 record, that had us ranked 9th (just like the year before!). We were an alliance captain at the World Championship, which was a huge honor, and we made it to the quarter finals before being eliminated. The Alpha Dogs were very proud of their performance.


In 2017, Ontario transitioned to a district system, where teams earn points for qualification ranking, playoff performance, and awards.  

We first competed at the Durham College event, where we were the 3rd pick on the second alliance.  Through good team play, our alliance won the event, and we also won Excellence in Engineering for the design and implementation of our hopper system that feeds our shooter. 

We then competed at Georgian College, where we again played in the playoffs, as the first pick on the 7th alliance, but only made it to the quarter finals.  However, we won another Excellence in Engineering award, this time for our custom drivetrain, which allowed us to better meet the challenges of this year’s game.

Our final event of the regular season was at Nipissing University, in North Bay.  This time we captained the 4th alliance, and advanced though to the semifinals.  We also won our 3rd Excellence in Engineering award for the shooter and the vision system to orient it.  

After our regular season, we finished 30th in the province in points, and we were invited to the Ontario Provincial Championships, held at the Hershey Center, in Mississauga. We seeded 16th, and we were the first pick on the 5th alliance, and we advanced to the semifinals.  We finished 12th overall in points in the province, which qualified us for the World Championships in St. Louis, Missouri. 

At the FIRST World Championships, we performed very well.  After 2 days of qualification rounds, we seeded 9th overall in the Curie division.  We were selected to join the 6th alliance, and made it all the way to the division finals.  We also won our 4th Excellence in Engineering award, this time for the robot in its entirety, and the sensors that helped it to efficiently play the game. 

2016 Stronghold

In 2016 we captained an alliance at the Greater Toronto Central Regional. As the captain, we were able to work together with the other teams to develop new strategies, and lead our alliance to the semi finals. We also won the Team Spirit Award, given to the team with the largest presence in the stands, cheering not just for themselves, but for their alliance as well.  

Later into the season, we competed at the Windsor Essex Great Lakes Regional where we were able to advance again to semi finals.  At this competition our team was awarded the Innovation in Control Award, which highlights excellence in robot programming specific to the game.  This was won for our innovative vision system that took trajectory into account when determining where to shoot projectiles. 


Our 2015 Robot, Elder Moler

Our 2015 Robot, Elder Moler

Our 2014 Robot, Alph

Our 2014 Robot, Alph


In 2015, we competed at the Greater Toronto Central Regional, where we were able to reach the playoffs. Though unable to advance to finals, we received the Innovation in Control Award. This award celebrates an innovative control system or application of control components which provide a robot with unique functions. It was awarded to us for our use of a linear potentiometer, as well as a unique combination of two software algorithms which gave us a huge degree of control over the system, both in automation and human control.

We then went to the North Bay Regional, where we again made it to the playoffs, advancing to the second round before unfortunately being eliminated.  We were also lucky to win another award; the highly prestigious Judges’ Award. This award was won for a combination of reasons including: design, team spirit, and professionalism.


In 2014, we competed in the Greater Toronto West Regional (GTR West) competition, winning the Highest Rookie Seed Award, the Innovation in Control Award, as well as the Rookie Inspiration Award.  After our success at the GTR West competition, we decided to compete in the North Bay Regional competition in an attempt to make it to the world championships.  Here we won another three awards including the Rookie All-Star Award, which enabled us to go to the FRC World Championships in St. Louis.  We played with great enthusiasm at World's and won the Rookie Inspiration Award on a global stage.  In an attempt to continue our first year's success, we competed in the FIRST Fall-Fiesta off-season competition, where we captained the winning alliance and won the Fall-Fiesta Best Rookie Team Award.