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PMS archers excel at World Tourney

Submitted by breland on Thu, 07/17/2014 - 12:44pm

The Petal Middle School Archery team ranked 20th out of 52 teams at the National Archery in Schools Program World Tournament last weekend in Madison, Wi.

Competing with the top archers in the world is one thing, but for the Panther archers, they made it to the world tourney in their first year of competition. Team Coach Scott Conway said the progress the team made was remarkable.

“We did not start practicing until February ahead of our first tournament on February 28,” Conway said. “But this run to the world tournament has really given the team a big boost, and the kids are already talking about next season.”

The inaugural year for the Petal School District’s middle and high school teams was a competitive one. The high school team was runner up at the state championship tournament, and their middle school counterparts made it to the top level of school archery.

Coach Conway said the teams all were committed and driven, and now they have seen their hard work pay off. 

“All of the kids on both teams have seen the top is reachable now,” Conway said. “Our middle schoolers were a bit nervous at first going to the world tournament, but that level of anxiety comes with the territory. But, they’ve seen that level of competition and want to go back.”

Aside from being one of the top archery teams in the country, another remarkable feat the middle schoolers accomplished was raising all of the funds they needed for trips to the national and world tournaments themselves. 

“Our kids managed to raise about $25,000 in three months, on top of practicing two and three times a week. They have really grown on me, and I’ve not seen a harder working group,” Conway said. 

Teams from 25 states and countries such as Canada, South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Mongolia competed at the world tournament sponsored by NASP. All team members get to compete and the highest 12 scores from each team are calculated for an overall score.

In the middle school rankings at the world tourney, Petal ranked 25th, but several individual archers performed well. Sarah Rector placed 11 out of 167 girls in the 5th grade girls division, 13 out of 297 in elementary girls division and 167 out of 1,135 in the overall girls ranking, with an individual score of 274. Tony Clark placed 44 out of 205 in the 7th grade boys ranking and 309 out of 1290 in the overall boys ranking with an individual score of 272.

- Courtesy