Shoreland Lutheran, Wisconsin Lutheran School qualify for VEX Robotics State Championship
Wisconn Valley VEX Robotics Competition

Shoreland Lutheran, Wisconsin Lutheran School qualify for VEX Robotics State Championship

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SOMERS — Teams from two local schools will advance to the Wisconsin State VEX Robotics Championship as a result of their performances at the 2020 Wisconn Valley VEX Robotics Competition held Jan. 18 at Shoreland Lutheran High School in Somers. The state tournament is Feb. 22 in Appleton.

Wisconsin Lutheran School, a Racine K4 through eighth-grade school competing in its first-ever robotics tournament, entered two teams that both earned state qualification spots. WLS Team 53403-B finished second in the middle school tournament and also won the Design Award. Team members are Faith Weigand, Racine; Kyah Rouce, Racine; and Asher Patterson, Mount Pleasant.

Meanwhile, WLS Team 53403-A qualified for state by posting a robot skills score of 110, which is the sixth-best score in the entire state of Wisconsin so far this season out of more than 100 teams, according to RobotEvents.com. Team members are Isaac Wong, Racine; Milo Knepper, Racine; Abbey Holmes, Sturtevant; and Tayven Holmes, Sturtevant.

Shoreland Lutheran’s team Absolute Zero clinched the Design Award in the high school tournament and qualified to compete in the state high school division. The Design Award is presented to a team that demonstrates an organized and professional approach to the design process, project and time management, and team organization. Judges use the team’s engineering notebook and an in-person interview to determine each team’s ability to produce a quality robot with minimal adult assistance. Winning team members are Derek Borchardt, Burlington; Gabriel Woller, Antioch; Jacob Hansen, Kenosha; John Schmidt, Burlington; Noah Erbe, Oak Creek; and Ryan Cerer, Antioch, Ill.

“Today’s students need to develop skills for jobs that don’t even exist yet, and that’s one of the reasons why VEX Robotics will serve these students well into their future,” said Dan Nolte, technology director and VEX Robotics coach of Shoreland. “These competitions help students learn to apply their STEM knowledge and sharpen critical-thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and communication skills.

Wisconn Valley prelims

Nearly 200 elementary, middle and high school students from southeastern Wisconsin, Appleton, and Northern, Illinois, converged at Shoreland for the Jan. 18 competition. The action-packed tournament featured 44 teams representing 18 schools who competed with and against other schools in a series of back-to-back robotics challenges.

Participants competed in two different games by strategically driving robots they designed, built and programmed, with guidance from their teachers and mentors, to score as many points as possible in qualification and finals matches, as well as skills challenges.

The high school participants in the VEX VRC division competed in a game called “Tower Takeover.” The game brings together two alliances, each composed of two teams that can be from different schools, that compete in matches involving driver-controlled play and self-driving play, which relies solely on coding skills. The goal is to strategically stack six-inch cubes in corners and place cubes in towers.

The elementary and middle school participants in the VEX IQ division played a game called “Squared Away.” This game pairs two teams together in a cooperative effort to score as many points as possible moving cubes and balls around a field.

The tournament was made possible by donations from Gateway Technical College, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Wisconsin Lutheran College and the University of Wisconsin Parkside.

The VEX Robotics Competition, presented by the Robotics Education & Competition Foundation, is the largest and fastest growing middle and high school robotics program globally with more than 11,000 teams from 32 countries playing in over 750 tournaments worldwide.

“Today’s students need to develop skills for jobs that don’t even exist yet, and that’s one
of the reasons why VEX Robotics will serve these students well into their future.
These competitions help students learn to apply their STEM knowledge and sharpen
critical-thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and communication skills.”
Dan Nolte, technology director at Shoreland Lutheran High School

“Today’s students need to develop skills for jobs that don’t even exist yet, and that’s one of the reasons why VEX Robotics will serve these students well into their future. These competitions help students learn to apply their STEM knowledge and sharpen critical-thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and communication skills."

Dan Nolte, technology director at Shoreland Lutheran High School

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