Aiming for Nationals

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Aiming for Nationals

Featured above are National Qualifiers Freshmen Emily Schneider and freshman Beth Blessent, junior Nic Bastion and senior Ben Blessent.

Featured above are National Qualifiers Freshmen Emily Schneider and freshman Beth Blessent, junior Nic Bastion and senior Ben Blessent.

Photo by: Photo by Francisco Castaneda

Featured above are National Qualifiers Freshmen Emily Schneider and freshman Beth Blessent, junior Nic Bastion and senior Ben Blessent.

Photo by: Photo by Francisco Castaneda

Photo by: Photo by Francisco Castaneda

Featured above are National Qualifiers Freshmen Emily Schneider and freshman Beth Blessent, junior Nic Bastion and senior Ben Blessent.

Story by Matthew Moore, Managing editor

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A phrase heard repeatedly by four students while preparing to compete on a national scale was “Aim small, miss small.”

The National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) held its National tournament this year in Louisville May 9-11.

Freshmen Emily Schneider and Beth Blessent, junior Nic Bastion and senior Ben Blessent qualified for the National Tournament.

In the weeks leading up to the tournament, the archers spent time with head coach Mary Packard to correct problems and perfect their form.

“We doubled the practices and let them play challenge games against each other,” Packard said. “The archers were pretty confident, we got a lot of practice in.”

Different strategies were implemented to help the archers prepare for the national stage.

“The coaches would help me by taking videos of me from various angles,” Beth said. “And then putting them in slow motion to slow down my shot and see what I was doing wrong.”

For Bastion, mental clarity was a priority.

“The biggest part is just putting in the hours and getting everything down to muscle memory,” Bastion said. “The hardest part about archery is just clearing everything out of your mind so you can focus on shooting.”

The biggest part is just putting in the hours and getting everything down to muscle memory,”

— Nic Bastion

Schneider had to re-learn certain techniques after making a change to her bow only weeks before the tournament.

“What I worked on the most was adjusting,” Schneider said. “I had just made a change two weeks before state, I put finger guides on because it can help with releasing, and it changed my aiming point.”

Although no archers placed, Ben finished the tournament with a score of 277, Beth scored a 270, Schneider shot a 272 and Bastion ended with a score of 242.

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