(Story courtesy of Brittany Jones/NASP)
Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn., was the place to be July 22-25 as the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP®) conducted its 2015 world tournament drawing a record 4,871 shooters from around the world!
That total of nearly 5,000 smashed last year’s world record turnout of 2,425 archers in Madison, Wis., and 2,907 archers who attended the event in St. Louis in 2013!
In all, 29 flights of nearly 190 archers per flight competed at NASP® distances of 10- and 15 meters. Awards were presented for top teams and individuals in each of the Elementary (ES), Middle (MS), and High School (HS) divisions.
“I am so happy that all of my practice paid off and that my family came to watch. Coming in first was not on my mind. I knew I had the ability, but I realize there are so many others that do as well.”
The runner up, with a score of 297, was David Machart from Iowa’s Anamosa HS.
Mary Aldridge of Western Hills and Marissa Phillips of Paul Lawrence Dunbar HS, both in Kentucky, were tied after the main event with 295s. Aldridge won the tiebreaker in front of 1,500 “friends and family” at the awards ceremony.
“Winning world, this year, was something I never expected as my practice time had been limited leading up to the tournament due to several weeks of preparation and attendance at the Kentucky Governors School for the Arts. Going into the tournament, I had made up my mind to focus on technique and not on results. This has made the surprise of this win even more thrilling and rewarding than I could have ever imagined. Thank you NASP®,” Aldridge said.
Winning the MS division was Mitchell Ritter of Ringling Public Schools, in Oklahoma, who shot a 297. In the female MS category, Lakyn Wilson of the Southwestern Jefferson County Schools, in Indiana, recorded a 293, to win first place.
Ryan Hinds of Kentucky’s Shopville Elementary dominated the ES division male category with an amazing score of 293. In the ES female category, first place was earned by Emma Bunch, of Benton Elementary, in Louisiana with a 292.
NASP® places much focus on entire teams. A NASP® team is comprised of 12-24 archers containing both genders on every team. The top 12 scores for the team, including at least four of both genders, are summed and ranked. A perfect team score would be 3,600 points. Michigan’s Hartland High School won top HS team honors with a score of 3,447. Louisiana’s Benton middle and elementary schools won their respected divisions with 3,367 and 3,290 points.
Beginning last year, NASP® and the International Bowhunting Organization (IBO) also conducted a “NASP®/IBO 3D Challenge” where simulated (foam) turkey, coyote, bear, antelope, deer, and mountain sheep are the targets. The kids love this break from shooting bull’s-eyes. At this world tournament 1,139 students participated in the 3D challenge. The top HS male shooter, Gerdus Visser, from Labori HS Paarl of Western Cape, South Africa, shot a score of 294. In the female category, April Bartenschlag of Philo High School, in Ohio, shot a first place score of 291.
In the Middle School Division, male category, Austin Miller of Forestbrook Middle School, in South Carolina, shot a 290 with a total bulls-eye score of 22. In the female MS category, Findely Stillwell of Forestbrook Middle School, South Carolina shot a 289. Lakyn Wilson of Kentucky’s Southwestern Jefferson County Schools also shot a 289. After the tiebreaker, Findley took first place, and Lakyn was the runner-up.
Bringing in the Elementary Division, Max Wangler of Sarcoxie Elementary, Missouri scored a 289 for top ES male archer honors. Among ES females, first place went to Sarah Bragg of Hartland High School with a 275.
The event owes much to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) host of this year’s world tournament. TWRA provided most of the volunteer lane officials and equipment to conduct another safe and fun event.
For more complete results, please click here.
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