History of the Team


In 2016, two coaches of The Fire Wires began their journey in Indiana: Michelle started at Saint Mary’s College and Rich started working at Penn-Harris-Madison. At PHM, Rich met Joe, who introduced Rich and Michelle to his wife, Allie. Together, they decided to start at FIRST team. 

This decision led the group to the Ethos Science Center, where they met with Brent Soper and Brian Boehler. Brian and Brent informed the group of GEARS, Inc, an Ethos satellite center, and let them know they had space for an additional FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) team at GEARS. The group went over to GEARS to meet with the owner/director, Scott Chase. 

With the help of Scott, Brian, and Brent, The Fire Wires were born. Working out of GEARS, The Fire Wires started a month late, with no funding. Using a donated kit, the students began work on a robot for their January competitions. One of the students sent over 60 emails to companies by herself! These emails ended up funding the team through three qualifying competitions and the state competition.

The Fire Wires headed over to the upper west side of Indy to compete at the NorWestIn FTC Qualifier on January 15th. By the end of the day, The Fire Wires were on the winning alliance and won the Rookie Sensation Award. 

Next, The Fire Wires headed to Lafayette to compete in the Bash on the Wabash FTC Qualifier. Again, by the end of the day, The Fire Wires were, once again on the winning alliance. 

On February 4th, The Fire Wires headed to their home event, the E3 Robotics Center FTC Qualifier. At home, The Fire Wires had their best qualifying match performance yet and were the first pick for the second alliance, but were eliminated in semifinals.

Finally, The Fire Wires packed up and headed to Crawfordsville to compete in the Indiana FTC State Championship. At the end of qualifiers, The Fire Wires were in second place, to their sister team, Vier Left. Vier Left ended up picking Toxic, which meant the GEARS teams held the top three spots in the state of Indiana. The Fire Wires picked the MechaHamsters to join their alliance and were able to lead their alliance to the finals, where The Fire Wires faced off against their sister teams, Vier Left and Toxic. The powerful number one alliance took the win, but left The Fire Wires as the finalist alliance captain; an incredible feat for a rookie team. We just barely missed out on a trip to the North Super Regional, but hope to compete at the Indiana Robotics Invitational (IRI) in July.