Hitting the target

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 18, 2024

Sugar Creek Academy archery team heads to nationals

Sugar Creek Academy’ archery team is headed to nationals next month.

The team had several members place at the Ohio State Archery Tournament of Champions on March 9.

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“We had nine go to state and we had three qualify for nationals,” said David Smith, the archery team coach and security officer at the school. “Four of the shooters we took to state, this is their first year on the team. They advanced really well. One of our archers, Rebecca Abshire, is ranked fourth for high school girls. I’m really pleased.”

The school began their program four years ago and has 27 sixth–12 graders on the team.

“We are part of the National Archery in the Schools Program. The guy that started it 20 years ago, he wanted another sport in the schools,” Smith explained.

According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, NASP’s “core content covers archery safety, equipment, technique, mental concentration and self-improvement. The program positively influences student attendance, behavior, self-esteem, confidence and on-task behavior. NASP transcends gender, racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds and provides an equal learning opportunity to all students by utilizing standardized equipment, training and implementation.”

“Some schools started archery as part of PE and they advanced from there,” Smith said. “Everyone shoots with the same bow, so it doesn’t matter how much money you’ve got. That is what I like about it.”

Smith said that archery is a good sport for students who may not be otherwise athletically inclined

“I think there is a need for an archery team at all schools,” he said. “You don’t have to be an athletic person to do it. There is a lot of mental aspects to it — there is no sight, no stabilizer to it.”

Smith said that 90 percent of the tournaments the team participates in are in Kentucky because there are a lot of teams in the Commonwealth.

“The closest one we go to in Ohio is in West Union,” Smith said.

The 2024 NASP Eastern Nationals will be held in May in Louisville, Kentucky.