Robotics teams compete in their first meet at Wood River

Weiser High School students attending the VEX Robotics competition at Wood River High School included, back from left, Kaden Hill, Elizabeth Thomas, Austin Mosley, Logan Rasmussen, Michael Shaber, Cristopher Cruz, Justin Ragan, Devion Jackson, Cheyne Smith, and Evelyn Rodriguez. Kneeling, from left, Soren Alder, Tony Torres, Jaison Rivera, and Daniel Pomo. Sitting, from left, Adrian Dobson, Shane Bush, Alek Dungar, Maximus Burkhart, Brett Fadling, Roman Salines, Jorge Martinez, and Esteban Rodriguez. Front, Ryan Glen and Luis Orozco.
Philip A. Janquart
The Weiser High School Vex Robotics teams competed in their first competition of the school year on Nov. 3. Thirty-one teams from all across Idaho came to compete at Wood River High School. 
 The competition was a good start to the year for two of the Weiser teams.
 “The trip to the VEX Robotics tournament at Wood River High School in Hailey, Idaho is always an exciting adventure and is always a student favorite. We are very young as a class, so I only had two teams that competed, but was able to bring most of the first year students along for the experience,” robotics coach Jon Lundberg said.    
 As with every year, the competition rules have changed giving this year a different format from the last. This year the game is a 2 vs. 2 team-based game called “Over Under.”
 This game is split into two parts, an autonomous part, and a player-controlled part. The basic goal of the game is to place balls into your scoring zone by using your robot.
 During the autonomous section, drivers are not allowed to directly control their robots and must instead use pre-programmed movements for robots to score points.
 At the very end, the robots must use their grabbers to climb a pole. The team whose robot gets the highest on the pole wins more points with the other teams also earning points depending on how well they did.
 Representing Weiser was the SLUG team: Austin Mosley, Ryan Glenn, Kade Hill, Logan Rasmussen, and Elizabeth Thomas. 
 Also representing Weiser was the H.I.V.E team: Soren Alder, Max Burkhart, Kaiden Peck, and Brett Fadling
 Alongside the two teams, is their coach, Jon Lundberg. Lundberg has been the robotics coach for ten years.
 “You never know how teams are going to do, because it is so early and is the first tournament of the season. Our teams competed well. I look forward to seeing what my students will achieve this season,” Lundberg said.
 Lundberg cares a whole lot about the robotics team. Through his passion and the student’s hard work, they were able to do quite well in this competition.
 The SLUG team placed fourth overall in the tournament. They had a close and intense match at the very end but sadly could not pull through causing them to miss out on being in the finals.
 The H.I.V.E team competed great as well. Sadly they lost in the quarter-finals.
 One of the SLUG team members, Hill, was very pleased with not only his performance but his team’s as well.
 “We found several new directions that we want to take our robot in and I think we will succeed even further once those are completed,” Hill said.
 Another SLUG team member, Thomas, is a newcomer this year and was very happy with how the first competition went.
 “I was extremely impressed with our placement going from 19th then almost going to the finals. There were things we had to quickly adapt to such as bugs in the code, who we went up against, and who our alliance was,” Thomas said.
 The next competition will be on Jan. 5 in Caldwell. Let’s hope the team can keep up their great momentum and continue to improve throughout the season.  


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