UCS team takes state title in robotics competition
UCS team takes state title in robotics competition
Posted on 01/04/2017
Team posing with first place award

A Shelby Junior High School robotics team has engineered the state title in a program that challenges students to design, build and program a robot that can compete in a field tournament. 

The school’s “Raging Robots” team earned a first place finish in the State of Michigan out of nearly 340 schools taking part in the First Tech Challenge on December 19, 2016.

The top award earned the 14-member team the right to represent Michigan in the Super Regionals in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on March 30, 2017.

“I’m proud to have worked with these students so far this season, and thankful for the many hours that my co-mentors and parents have dedicated to the FIRST FTC program,” said Head Mentor Wade Sorensen. “It’s more than just building a robot, it’s about building future professionals.”

The First Tech Challenge requires teams to enter robots of their design and construction in a competition against another school that requires their finished product to shoot, capture and lift large field objects.

Teams are challenged to develop strategies and build robots based on sound engineering principles. One of the goals of FTC is to recognize the engineering design process and "the journey" that a team makes during its phases.

The Shelby Junior High School Raging Robots – Team 7253 – is comprised of Ashton King, Ava Haithcock, Chad Sorensen, Thomas Hayward, Katherine Hayward, Sam Leone, Curtis Reichenbach, Will Olson, Nolan White, Jamie Knoflach, Chris Apfel, Alex Lewis, Aaryan Naruka and Lance Rounds. Team mentors are Wade Sorensen, Andy White, Jim Reichenbach, Stephen Haithcock, Ray Knoflach, Aaron King, Jeff Apfel and Ben Olson.

In addition to taking first place at the state competition, the teams earned a second place finish and won the “Connect” award at the Marysville and Allendale qualifying tournament. Students also earned a nomination for the “Controls” award at the Allendale qualifier.

The team has been working on their robot since early September, starting by developing and creating different prototypes and creating their robot through a final design.  Students used space donated by local business owner Jordan Yankee of ArcticFx to build a practice field for their robot.

Once the robot was built, a student software team took over to get their creation competition ready.