By Elisabeth Slay The Shawnee News-Star firstname.lastname@example.org
After competing in various tournaments all season, the McLoud Archery Team will compete in the Nationals April 30 in Salt Lake City.
According to Coach Brandi Steed, as the students compete in tournaments all season, their scores are ranked going into state tournaments.
“The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife ranks these teams and places them into third parties,” Steed said. “The top 14 teams in the state compete in OKNASP Grand State and the remaining teams compete in the Eastern tier 2, Central tier 2 and Western tier 2 tournaments.”
Steed explained the team finished at Grand State as the runner up and qualified as a high school level team for the third year in a row.
The educator said schools can qualify by placing in the top 20 in each state as a team or in the top 10 in each state as an individual.
For nine years Steed has coached archery and is so proud of her team for their determination.
“It feels amazing to have the opportunity to coach such a dedicated and hard working group of high school students and to be a part of them achieving their goal to reach the National tournament,” Steed said. “We also have a fantastic and supportive group of parents that will be making the trip along with our team.”
Steed said McLoud Public Schools started its archery program at the junior high level, which was extremely successful.
“The interest in the program led our administration to include offering archery to the high school and elementary (students),” Steed said. “Our program has grown to include competitive archery from fourth to 12th grades.”
The district was inspired to provide archery for students who weren’t interested in taking part in traditional extra curricular activities.
“It is a unique sport that allows students at any level to compete. Archery at McLoud provides students with a sense of pride and belonging in their school community, a place to learn how to set and achieve goals and a place of accountability to their academic studies, ”she said.
For Steed the best aspect of her job is watching her students compete and she is excited to see her team go to Nationals.
“Their goal as a team this year was to earn a trip to the national tournament and they’ve achieved that,” Steed said. “The regular archery season lasts from August to February so watching these athletes stay focused on their goal and improve their talents over such a long season is proof of their commitment to the sport and the pride they feel in representing McLoud.”
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