Worthington school’s archery team draws interest, wins state championship

When Worthington Schools’ Bluffsview Elementary School fifth-grader Amelia Gorbett heads to the school’s gym after school, she’s not aiming to play basketball or volleyball.

She is there to practice archery as a member of the Bluffsview archery team.

“It’s been really fun,” said Amelia, who joined the team in fourth grade. “Seeing your scores and how you did that day is always really fun, and seeing how you can improve.”

Coach Ben Wilson said archery is a rare extracurricular sport in central Ohio, with Bluffsview being one of the only schools in the area – let alone an elementary school – to offer it. Students have to try out for the team, and this year, he said, Bluffsview has 31 archers on its roster.

Fourth-grader Carerra Walcott takes aim at a target during a Bluffsview archery team practice session March 31 in Worthington.

Because archery is an uncommon scholastic activity in central Ohio, the Bluffsview team often competes against more rural schools throughout the state, Wilson said. Despite this, the team has won a state championship in 2013, 2019 and this year at Ohio’s National Archery in the Schools Program on March 19 and 20.

Wilson said he’s allowed to take 24 archers to the state championship, with the top 12 scorers accounting for the team’s scores at the tournament. The competition has three scoring rounds from 10 meters and another three scoring rounds from 15 meters.

Bluffsview won this year with a total team score of 3,089.

Fourth-grader Aarush Singh is in his first year on the team. Fourth grade is the earliest a student can join. He said he was inspired by an older friend on the team to pick up a bow and try it out – and when he did, he made the cut.

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