2nd Annual Lake Superior Robotics Tournament Wraps Up

By KBJR News 1

March 10, 2012 Updated Mar 10, 2012 at 8:19 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- The past three days have seen a robot invasion in Duluth.

After six weeks of hard work and long hours, 65 Robotics teams from across the Midwest gathered for the 2nd Annual Lake Superior Regional Competition to show off their robot's skills on the court.

"The past few weeks have been crazy. We've had to work a lot of long hours," says Lauren Johnson, one of the students from Marshall Hilltoppers.

Three teams from Duluth, Marshall, Denfeld and Duluth East as well as Silver Bay's William Kelley High School all competed in this year's regional tournament.

"We're really happy to have three teams in the Duluth Area," says Duluth East Daredevils coach Tim Velner. "And next week we're going to visit Superior and talk to them about getting a robotics team going there."

This year students had to build a robot that could make a few shots through a hoop.

But just like in basketball, teamwork was key to winning. In every round, teams were put into an alliance. In each round, alliances would change, meaning you could have a team on your side in one round and then be against them in the next.

In order to earn more points, robots also had to balance on three bridges placed in the middle of the court. The better you worked with your alliance and got your robots to balance on the bridges, the more points you earned.

But it's not just about building a robot for these students. It's also about learning skills and morals that they can take with them into the future.

"I hope to take away the people skills with working with all the people and strategizing with other people and working with the robots," says one student from King TeC in Prior Lake, MN.

"I like knowing that I can go into college and I'm using accounting as my major and I'm not going to be completely lost," says Mallory Uttemark from the Duluth East Daredevils.

And it's evident that robotics are becoming the new trend.

"We have 152 robotics teams in Minnesota," says Velner. "There's 157 high school hockey teams. We're going to surpass the number of hockey teams probably next year."

The Duluth East Daredevils were given the Engineering Excellence Award for their robot this year.

To learn more about robotics, you can visit the F.I.R.S.T Robotics' website here: http://www.usfirst.org/

Posted to the web by Krista Burns