HOT SPRINGS – The Rattler Senior High Archery Team from Murfreesboro placed one boy and two girls in the top 10 of their respective divisions and slipped away with the team title in the Arkansas National Archery in the Schools Program state championship last Saturday at Bank of the Ozarks Arena.
The Rattler squad edged Alpena High School by 5 points, 3,313 to 3,308 to win the title. Batesville High’s Pioneers finished in third place with a score of 3,297 points. Teams entered up to 16 archers in the contest for scoring. The Rattlers, who improved 50 points from their regional total at Delight in February, were paced by Alec Pettigrew, who scored a 285 out of a possible 300 points for seventh place in the boys division, while Aspen Harris scored 284 and Francis Keys recorded a 283 to finish in the top 10 in the girls division.
Kaleb Tramel of Pottsville High School won the boys division with 293 out of a maximum 300 points, hitting 23 bulls-eyes worth 10 points each and seven more arrows just outside the yellow bulls-eye, worth 9 points each. Anna Mathis of Valley Springs High School led the girls division with a 287 and placing 20 arrows in the 10-point yellow circle.
Thirty-seven teams competed in the senior high division. Most were top 3 finishers in February in regional competition, along with regional hosts who did not finish in the top 3 teams at their events. A total of 217 girls and 287 boys competed in the senior division. Brody Webb of Acorn High School trailed Tramel by just two points in the boys division with a 291 total, followed by Andy Jackson, Sr. Indians Group team, 290; Austin Prichard of the Benton Panthers, 289; and Alex Robinson of Greene County Tech, 287.
Mathis’ winning 287 in the girls division was 1 point better than three other archers: Jordan Morris of the Bryant Hornets, Andi Benbrook of the Parkview Patriots Archery, and Emily Taylor of Valley View High School, whose team was overall fourth. Ronni Laslo of the Batesville Pioneers was fifth individually with 285 points.
Friday’s competition at Bank of the Ozarks Arena featured elementary and middle school competitors. Hill Farm Elementary of Bryant repeated as the elementary division champion. Greene County Tech edged out Alpena Junior High, Valley Springs Middle and Batesville Junior High to win the middle school division.
Hill Farm displayed powerhouse form in placing first in elementary girls, with Abigail Dunbar scoring 280, and Kolby Duncan in boys with 273. Jacklyn Price in girls and Preston Howlett in boys also recorded Top 10 finishes for Hill Farm.
Meanwhile, Kenley Burgess of Greene County Tech prevailed in a shootout to settle a five-way tie at 283 to win the junior boys division. Matthew Kearby of Des Arc Eagle Eye Archery, James Polk of Washington Middle, Caise Austin of Greene County Tech and Dillen Nichols of Alpena all finished at 283 as well. Kearby’s 17 bulls-eyes was the deciding factor in winning the tiebreaker. In the junior girls division, Bailey Mason of the Maumelle Stingers had one more center shot to edge Cherri Dorrough after both tied at 286. Curtlynn Wilcox of Greene County Tech was third at 282.