Norwich Middle School Archery Team Wins State Tournament, Qualifies For National Competition

By: Meagan Schulz

Norwich Middle School Archery Team wins state tournament, qualifies for national competition Group of archers aim for the target at the Norwich High School tournament earlier this year. The Norwich Middle School and High School had a strong season with many qualifiying for the national tournament but the event was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Submitted Photo)

Four high school archers also earn trip; 11 named as Academic Archers

NORWICH – Many athletes’ seasons ended abruptly this school year, and the both the Norwich High School and Middle School Archery Teams were no exception.

Scheduled to attend the New York State tournament in Syracuse on March 20, COVID-19 forced the event to be changed to a school-based tournament.

Instead, members of the teams shot a full bullseye round at the high school gymnasium on March 15 for a virtual state competition with scores then being submitted to the state.

The results were compiled at the state level and the Norwich High School team placed second with a team score of 3038 points while the middle school group finished at the top of the 2020 New York State Tournament field.

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Emma Evans placed the highest individually for the team, scoring 251 points for third in the girls division. Teammate Leanna Sayles finished sixth with 222 while Emelia Pepe racked up 208 points for eighth.

In the boys division, Norwich swept the top five spots with each archer recording a personal best for the tournament.

Braden Reid took home the New York State Championship with 275 points while Jonah Adams finished second with 268. Josh Lindridge, who was six points behind Adams, grabbed third place by a point over teammate Jacob Dowdall. Zach Parker rounded out the top five with 253 points. 5th (253).

Zavier Bucksbee added a top 10 finish with his 245 points, aiding in the tournament win for the Norwich Middle School team.

With the team placing first, all archers that participated in the virtual tournament would have also qualify to attend the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) National Tournament in Lousiville, Kentucky that was scheduled for May 7-9.

However, due to the said pandemic (Covid-19), the NASP Nationals were cancelled for this year.

By placing in the top 10 at the New York State competition, four Norwich High School team members – Chase Ballard, Andrew Mullen, Abigail Natoli, and Haley Shattuck – also earned the chance to join their middle school colleagues with their individual performances from the state virtual tournament.

Ballard and Mullen each scored 278 points in the tournament but with the tiebreaker rules, Ballard ended in sixth place and Mullen finished seventh for the boys. The girls saw Natoli place fifth with her 274 points while teammate Shattuck finished just three points behind for sixth.

Academically, the Norwich High School team had 11 students recognized as Academic Archers for the season. Mullen, Natoli and Shattuck were joined by Eric Cushman, Nick Deady, Briannah Downey, Barbara Maricle, Lucia Pepe, Meadow Rosenthal, Jessie Sutton, and Gabe Sutton for this honor.

“I am very proud of the season the team that we had this year,” said Coach Nicole Beckwith. “It is unfortunate that the archers were not able to capitalize off of the hard work they put into throughout the season. However, these unprecedented times have changed the path for many.”

Beckwith went on to recognized the three seniors set to graduate in June, saying Chase Ballard, Katherine Becker, and Haley Shattuck have been pillars within the archery team and their leadership, dedication, and pure passion for the sport will be deeply be missed.

Returning archers as well as Coach Beckwith are already looking forward to next season. To find out more information about the team or how to join, contact Coach Beckwith via email.

New York State High School Archery 2020 Virtual Competition Results

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Team Standings:

1st place: St. Joseph by the Sea, 3346 points

2nd place: Norwich High School, 3038 points

Individual Standings: (Archers in the top 10 qualified for Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky)

Males:

Chase Ballard, 278, 6th place (12th grade 2nd place)

Andrew Mullen, 278, 7th place (11th grade 2nd place)

Eric Cushman, 271, 14th place (10th grade 5th place)

Nick Deady, 251, 20th place (11th grade 4th place)

Ethan Swarts, 236, 27th place (11th grade 6th place)

Females:

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