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Robotics triumphs at world championships

Senior Liam O'Bannon hoists the world championship banner and Senior Cecilia Kalthoff carries the championship trophy during the school wide clap-up. (Miles Andersen)

Senior Liam O'Bannon hoists the world championship banner and Senior Cecilia Kalthoff carries the championship trophy during the school wide clap-up. (Miles Andersen)

Claire Moriarty, Opinions Editor

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Viking Robotics emerged victorious at the FIRST Robotics World Championship in Houston, Texas, where they competed against teams from America, Canada, Mexico and Japan, among other countries. They are the first Washington team to claim the title of world champions.

“It still hasn’t quite sunk in,” sophomore and drive team member Erika Piltz said. “I kinda just make jokes about it.”

The competition took place April 19 – 22. The team has been meeting up to five times a week since September Robotics Coach Brian Connolly said that the win helped to reinvigorate them with new energy.

“It adds a lot of excitement to the team after such a long season,” Connolly said.

The winning alliance included teams from Tucson, Ariz., Atascadero, Calif., and Berkeley, Calif. Viking Robotics was selected for this alliance over other, more highly ranked teams.

“A lot of the tough parts are exactly what is tough about any school project: working with others, getting along, and not only being gracious when your ideas are picked, but also being gracious when your ideas are not picked,” Connolly said. “The team ended up pulling that out.”

As the season culminates, competitions become more intense and more difficult. “The hardest part overall is just not knowing,” sophomore and Vice President Madelyn Chandler said. “Every step of the way there’s stages where we either get in or we’re done, and we don’t know until it’s over.”

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Robotics triumphs at world championships