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Van Buren HS, Bledsoe MS Win Third Straight NASP Titles, Hickman Takes First Elementary Crown

Wednesday, April 06, 2011 | 08:24am
MURFREESBORO, Tenn.  --- Van Buren County High School and Bledsoe County Middle School each claimed their third state championship crowns in their respective divisions at the Fifth Annual Tennessee National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) State Championships held at the Tennessee Miller Coliseum.
In the elementary school division, Hickman County claimed its first state title. A record 43 schools and 944 students participated in the three divisions in the growing program. The event was held at the Murfreesboro location for the second year.
Van Buren County shot 3,199, 90 points better than last year’s score to win the overall title along with the high school crown. Rival Bledsoe County was a close second with 3,185 followed by Siegel (3,149), CHET (3,100), and Lawrence County (3,049) for the top five.
Bledsoe County Middle shot a 3,079 to wins its division, 20 points ahead of Van Buren County’s 3,059, the runner-up again this year. Meigs County was third (2,914) followed by E.O. Coffman of Lawrenceburg (2,910) and Warren County (2,903).
Hickman County hoisted the first place trophy for the first time by shooting a 2,624. Shooting in its first state tournament, Christiana Elementary School from Rutherford County was second with a 2,584. Last year’s state champion, Bledsoe County, was third with 2,568. West Elementary from McMinnville was fourth with a 2,458 while first year participant East Montgomery was fifth with a 2,396.
The overall top individual score came from Kayla Hillis of Van Buren County who shot a 288 (out of a possible 300). Last year’s top female shooter, Amber Abate, from Clarksville’s Northwest High School, finished second with a 280. Hillis’ win broke a four-year stretch where the top female shooter has come from Northwest.
Chris Frady from Bledsoe County High was the top overall male shooter with a 286. Van Buren County High’s Blake Sullivan and Tanner Hillis each shot a 281.
The top three team finishers and the top five female and male individuals from each division qualify for the NASP National Tournament. The 2011 NASP National Tournament is May 13-14 in Louisville, Ky.
Team awards were presented following Tuesday’s competition to the top three teams in each division. Medals were presented to the top five female and male finishers in each division. Each student shot 30 arrows, 15 from 10 meters and 15 from 15 meters with a maximum score of 300.
In the elementary division, the top five female finishers were Jacklynn Bryant (258, Van Buren County), Lorryn Dyer (255, Van Buren County), Cailyn Simonis (250, CHET), Jaelyn Roberts (249, Van Buren), and Rachel Reshonsky (244, Rockvale).
For the elementary boys, following CHET’s Grayson Phillips, last year’s overall winner repeated as the division winner with a 277. Second place went to Joey Vanvalkenburg (264, Bledsoe County) followed by Carson Yarbrough (263, CHET), Robert Balderas (263, Warren County), and Hayden Everrett (259, Warren County).
The top female and male finishers in the Middle School Division each moved into their respective top spots after finishing in second place last year. Bledsoe County’s Haley Corder, claimed the individual title with a 283. She was followed by Trudy Smith (267, Van Buren County), Natalie Boles (265, Siegel), Haili Schubert (261, CHET), and Hannah Graham (260, Meigs County).
Van Buren County’s Hunter Mason improved on his score by 10 points from a year ago to finish with a 280 to be the top male. Finishing in the top five were Craig Bowen (277, Siegel), Jared Compton (271, Bledsoe County), Isaiha Gardenhire (269, White County), and Nicolai Medvecky (268, Bledsoe County).
Following Kayla Hillis and Amber Abate, the top female shooters from high school division were Sabra Curt (276, Lawrence County), Sarah Kate Chapman (269, Lawrence County), and Leanetta Anderson (265, Siegel).
In the male high school division, completing the top five behind Chris Frady, Blake Sullivan, and Tanner Hillis, were Austin Duncan (280, Van Buren County), and Caleb Miller (278, CHET).
Sponsored by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA), Tennessee began NASP in late 2004 with 12 pilot schools participating in the program. A total of 186 schools now participate in the program. NASP is a 2-8 week curriculum taught during school that teaches International style target archery.
If a school or teacher is interested in starting a NASP program, please contact Don Crawford, Assistant Chief of Information and Education at or (615) 781-6542 or Matt Clarey, Regional Training Coordinator in TWRA Region III at or 1-800-262-6704 or (931) 484-9571.
Van Buren County (top) and Bledsoe County, won their third NASP state titles in the high school and middle school divisions, respectively.
Kayla Hillis (Van Buren County High School) had the top female and overall score at the 2011 NASP State Championships with a score of 286 (out of a possible 300) while Chris Frady (Bledsoe County High School) had the top score by a male shooter with a 286.
Note: Hickman County was the elementary school division champion but departed prior to the awards' ceremony.

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