The Student News Site of Pella High School


The Student News Site of Pella High School


The Student News Site of Pella High School


Bionic Dutch Go To State

The Pella Bionic Dutch, the school robotics team, have made their way to the State Robotics Championships for the first time ever. The team placed as a semi-finalist in the state qualifiers, which means that on March 1 and 2 the robotics team will go to the X-stream Arena in Coralville to participate in the State Championships. 

To get to the State Championships the Dutch had to place in the top half of their league to qualify for the State Qualifiers, and then they placed well enough in that to be one of the nine teams from their league to be selected to go to the State Championships. 

Robotics team coach Brent Ewell said, “So we qualified and were selected to be in the championship bracket, which we came up as, we lost in the final round, so we weren’t the total winner, we were a semi-finalist in that, and we won the engineering design award, so those two things helped us to be selected to advance to state.”

Now that the team has qualified for State, they are busy preparing for the big event. They are perfecting their code so that their robot can function perfectly for the autonomous period of the competition, which is where the robot acts on its own, and they are making sure that their robot is mechanically reliable as well. 

One of the most important aspects of the competition is the autonomous period,” says robotics team captain Jack Weaver, “This has been a major focus point for preparing for the State competition and programmed by our two programmers. This is a tedious process that involves us running our robot through a series of java scripts and resetting its position to constantly fine tune the code to score points and complete tasks.”

After just missing State last year the team is going to try their best to go as far as they can, and accomplish more than the team ever has before. 

“Our motto was dream big, work hard, so we were just short of going to State last year so the team’s goal was to get to State this year… so now our goal is to learn as much as we can and position ourselves as high up in the state rankings as possible,” says Ewell.

After a successful season and a lot of work the Dutch have prepared for State and have high hopes. 

“My personal goal for the State tournament is to prove that our team has what it takes to compete at State in the following years, and show that we belong with the top teams,” says Weaver, “we want this tournament to be a great send off for our seniors on the team graduating this year, and there is no better way to do it then by advancing farther than the team ever has.”

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