Taking aim, changing targets


Photo by: Morgan Noe

Story by Matthew Moore, Managing editor

Sophomore Kyle Wescott draws his string back and releases it. The string snaps forward and his arrow flies towards his target.

For Wescott, “target” holds multiple meanings. Wescott has been hunting since he was three and is comfortable with a bow.

“Bow hunting to me means that I can provide food for my family,” Wescott said. “It shows what I love to do: I like to work for stuff that I want.”

Bow hunting to me means that I can provide food for my family

— Kyle Wescott

Wescott is also starting his second year on the archery team under the coaching of Mary Packard, and practicing whenever he can.

He’s picked it up,” Packard said. “He’s just one of those guys thats been there and it takes a while to get used to it since the difference [for him] is the hunting part.

Packard could see from the beginning that the transition from hunting to archery would not be easy.

“He had a lot of really bad habits,” Packard said. “We had pointed them out and he was aware but he couldn’t get himself to fix it.”

Things like the direction his hand went after he released the arrow would effect Wescott’s shot and he had to work to fix that.

“It was hard for me in the beginning because I was used to shooting with sights and they didn’t have sights on that bow,” Wescott said. “I had to get used to how I stand and how I breath and how I release the arrow.”

Eventually, through practice, Wescott was able to work out the problems and started to improve.

“Somehow, he was able to figure out last spring, it got to the lowest it could possibly go and then he pulled himself out of it and he started shooting really well,” Packard said. “It was like mind over matter, I’m going to make my body do what my mind wants.”

Over the last two years Wescott has put time into archery to compensate for the differences of hunting. Once Wescott started mastering certain techniques, such as “painting his face,” he was able to work out other problems and started shooting better.

“I practiced and practiced and practiced,” Wescott said. “I went home and practiced more and then the tournament came up and I started out like I used to and then I Started painting my face and I was good after that.”

While Wescott has already shot an 11 point buck this year, he is still looking for his next kill.

“Right now, I’m hunting deer,” Wescott said. “I’ve already shot my buck, so right now I’m just trying to shoot a doe because we need some meat.           

Wescott has no plans to quit hunting any time soon and hopes spread it any way he can.

“I plan on hunting for the rest of my life,” Wescott said. “And if I have kids, I plan on taking them out hunting.”