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STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – When a natural disaster strikes, who will you turn to? “Nature’s Fury” is the theme of the first “Lego League Bulldog” Qualifying Tournament. Hundreds of middle school students from North Mississippi, Jackson and Vicksburg say their robotic projects may someday be the answer.

“They competed in Core judging, Robot judging, and in Project judging. So they had to talk to the judges about a solution to a natural disaster, ” says Mariah Morgan, who works for MSU Extension Program.

Students were asked to create a robotic device that would solve a problem in the aftermath of a natural disaster like an earthquake, hurricane or even an erupting volcano.

“We created a mask for people in volcanos to protect them from ash and dust. All that’s in the air,” says Armstrong Middle School 8th grader, Leah McGrew.

Sixteen teams will compete in the first round but only 12 teams will move on to compete at the state level. The competition is stiff but students say the excitement of competition keeps them coming back for more each year.

“It’s fun and you can meet new people. There’s always new challenges and new things to do so it always encourages me to come back,” says McGrew.

The day-long event is the first of three qualifying events in the state. The winning teams will move on to the state tournament held on March 1st in Hattiesburg.

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