The junior/senior robotics team from Decorah High School, the Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Men and Women, competed at the state robotics competition in Coralville on Saturday. The championship competition featured the top 48 robotics clubs in Iowa and eastern Nebraska who participated in the FIRST Tech Challenge this season. The competition was held in the Xtream Arena and featured two different divisions, with four different matches on separate fields being played simultaneously. 

The Decorah team had many highlights throughout their six qualification matches, including delivering three cones during their pre-programmed, autonomous period for the first time in a competition and scoring 198 points in their 4th match of the day when paired with the Xcentrics from Xavier High School. The team also gave a presentation to a panel of judges describing the engineering process they underwent in the creation of their robot, their game strategy, and how they’ve spread knowledge about STEM activities in their community. The Wacky Wavers received an Exemplary rating for their presentation and their displays of teamwork through the competition. The team ended the competition in 20th place in their division.

“Our students did an amazing job of competing this weekend,” said coach Brett Wilker. “They put in so much time since early September designing, building, programming, and practicing with our robot in order to compete with some of the best teams in the country at the state competition. Every student on the team played a part in our success this season, and they should be proud of what they’ve accomplished.”

Pit Area Photo
The team posed for a photo at their workspace in the pit area of the competition. 
Front row (l-r): Anders Lovstuen, Ethan Stravers, Justin Berlage, Aiden Burroughs, Quin LaBelle, Nathaniel Myers 
Back row (l-r): Junior Battle, Henry Weis, Peter Essa, Nathan Swarbrick, Montana Jump-Gerleman, Brock Christensen, Travis Nordheim, Coach Brett Wilker 
(Not Pictured: Cody Carolan)
Practice Field Photo
The drive team works on their robot on one of the practice fields in between matches.