The Navigator

The Navigator

The Navigator


Where did you visit this spring break?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Mighty Robots!

Ultraviolet’s robot Chester shooting a “note” into the goal in front of Team Captain Mason Vogt (‘25), Assistant Captain Brianna Dykoski (‘26), and Drive Coach and Technical Lead Nathan Hickman (‘24).

Robotics is going to the World Championships in Houston, Texas! Five weeks after Ultraviolet, the Southwest High School Robotics Team’s first competition in Duluth, they competed again and won at their last regional competition of the year, the Seven Rivers Regional. At their first regional in Duluth, MN, Ultraviolet was a finalist. The team fiercely competed with their robot “Chester” at the Lacrosse regional from April 3rd to 6th. The regional victory is the first in the team’s 16-year competitive history. While Ultraviolet has competed in the World Championships once before in 2022, they qualified as finalists from a complicated wild card system. In 2024, the luck of the past was replaced by hard work; the team’s victory was well-deserved. One could say they were not carried.

At the Lacrosse regional, they went 12-4 in matches compared to Duluth’s record of 9-5. Ultraviolet ranked 7th overall in qualifications out of 54 teams, whereas they were ranked 13th out of 55 in Duluth. The robot was on fire, if, thankfully, not literally true. Their alliance members were Team 7021 from Arcadia, WI, and Team 9576 from Loretto, MN. Their EPA, or expected points added, at Lacrosse, was 35.1, compared to the world average of 15. This puts them well within the world average’s 90-99 percentile range. 

Outreach Lead and CAD Specialist Haley Durkee (‘25) was selected for the Dean’s List Finalist Award at Lacrosse for the second year in a row. This is the preliminary selection for the FIRST Dean’s List Award, the highest award an individual student can receive. Only ten people in the world are selected for the winning batch at the Champs in Houston. In 2022, then Ultraviolet Team Captain Nate King won the FIRST Dean’s List Award at the World Championships. Let’s hope Haley can do the same this year!

Team Captain Mason Vogt (‘25) said about this rare occasion: “The opportunity to compete at the World Championship is incredible. Meeting teams from around the world lets us build connections and grow our skillsets. This achievement was only made possible by the incredibly diligent work of our students, the dedicated hours put in by our mentors, and the generous support from our sponsors.”

Scouting Lead Jack Zodrow (‘24) stated: I’m super excited. We have one of the best records in the state, and we put in the work. I don’t want to say 2022 was a fluke, but a lot of things had to go right for us to make it there, and this year we won.”

Team Mentor Tim Dirr commented: “This team is incredibly hard-working and collegial. We have a solid group of new people this year. They walked in the door cold in September and since have made progress on computer-aided design (CAD), CNC fabrication, 3D printing, and controls programming. In addition to tool skills, our student leaders helped new members to master the fundamentals of teamwork as well as the iterative design process needed to create the robot. For such a small team to be so accomplished is really impressive.”

The robotics team was incredibly elated at the news that they qualified for the World Championships. The World Championship will take place from April 17th to 20th. As predicted after the Duluth regional, the new mechanism for scoring was finished and helped greatly with strategy in matches. Wish them the best of luck at Houston! 

Find out more about their team and robot at

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Henry Nafziger
Henry Nafziger, Copy Editor
Henry is a junior in his first year with The Navigator. He is a part of the Robotics team, the Japanese Club, the Green team, and mentors a middle school robotics club. He loves botany, biking, and singing/writing/listening to music.

Comments (0)

All The Navigator Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *