Robots take to the court for regional tournament at Aviano
AVIANO AIR BASE, Italy — Basketball season might have just ended, but McNeely Gym will be full of competitors playing a variation on hoops this weekend.
Aviano hosts a FIRST regional robotics tournament on Friday and Saturday, with 15 other teams from DODEA and international schools vying for the rights to go to the world championships in the States.
It’s the first time that a DODEA-Europe school has hosted such an event, said tournament director Dave Izzo. Organizers would like it to mark the beginning of an annual tradition.
“I’m hoping we can advance two DODDS teams to the world championships because it’s never been done before,” said Jim Rowell, the mentor/coach of Aviano’s team.
Aviano has gone the past two years, qualifying at a regional tournament in the Czech Republic. Vilseck is the only other team in Europe to have sent a team to the world championships before. Vilseck, two teams from Ramstein, Kaiserslautern, Stuttgart and Lakenheath are all taking part. So are five local national teams from the Netherlands, another from Germany and American School of Barcelona.
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