Photo: Sophomore Kamryn Twehus, Blair Oaks High School, Missouri, dominated the NASP World Tournament, taking first in the girls’ division and was named overall individual champion, with a score of 299 out of 300. Photo courtesy Missouri Department of Conservation.
More than 10,000 friends and family, 180 volunteers, and exactly 4,967 student archers from 358 schools all over the United States gathered June 7-9 at the Louisville Exposition Center for the National Archery in the School Program’s World Tournament.
This was the 10th year of the World NASP Tournament since it was first held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Florida.
The number of student archers participating in this year’s tournament surpassed the previous record of 4,871 student archers who competed at the 2015 world tournament held at Nashville’s Music City Center.
The same competitive format used in past tournaments was maintained. Each flight was 60 minutes in length, during which each archer shot five practice arrows and 15 scored arrows for a total of 40 arrows. Archers shot bare bow-style from 10 and 15-meter shooting lines using no stabilizers, sights or release aids. As the whistle sounded, arrows took flight, and results flew in.
Beginning with the Elementary Division, the top honors went to Mathew Harper, a fifth grader at Maysville Elementary School in Ohio with a score of 294 (24 tens). In the top female spot, Lola Norman, also a fifth grader and Academic Archer (AA) at Foundation Christian Academy in Kentucky, shot a 291 with 24 tens.
In the Middle School Division, Karson Warrington, an eighth grader at Zaneis School in Oklahoma, earned the top score of 298 (28 tens). Beth Merrifield, an eighth grader and Academic Archer from Jefferson Middle School in Illinois, scored 293 (23 tens).
In the High School Division, Donald Holupka, a tenth grader and Academic Archer at Hillsboro High School in Missouri, achieved the high score of 298 (28 tens). Kamryn Twehus, a tenth grader from Blair Oaks High School in Missouri, shot a near perfect score of a 299 (29 tens).
Both high school divisional winners Holupka and Twehus were also recognized the overall winners from the combined divisions.
Overall male for the 2018 World NASP Tournament went to Donald Holupka after winning a tie-breaker with Oklahoma’s Karson Warrington. They had both shot 298s. The overall female winner was Missouri’s Kamryn Twehus with her score of 299 (29 tens). Emilee Manning, a twelfth grader from Chandler HS in Oklahoma, was named overall runner-up.
NASP teams are comprised of 12-24 student archers, and students of both genders are required to be on the team. The top possible score is 3,600 points.
Top team honors in the bull’s-eye competition went to Benton Elementary School with a score of 3317 (152 tens), Caudill Middle School with a score of 3410 (211 tens), and Castle High School with a score of 3454 (244 tens).
Since 2002, the NASP has hosted Eastern National tournaments at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, but 2018 was Center’s first time to host the 2018 NASP World Tournament.
Meanwhile, at the NASP/IBO 3D Challenge
While the bull’s-eye competition was going on in the North Wing of the Expo Center, the NASP/IBO (International Bowhunting Organization) 3D Challenge got underway in the South Wing. A total of 1,529 archers from 167 schools participated, a 30 percent increase over the 2017 World Tournament in Orlando where 1,179 archers competed.
Overall male winner in the 3D competition was Tommy Wills, a seventh grade Academic Archer at McEwen Middle School in Tennessee, with a high score of 298 (28 tens). Overall male runner-up was Roby Mullins, a twelfth grade Academic Archer at Lincoln County HS in Kentucky, with a score of 297(27 tens).
The overall 3D female shooter was Kimberly Matherly, a tenth grade Academic Archer from Reitz Memorial HS in Indiana, who scored 298 (28 tens). Runner-up female went to Emilee Manning, a twelfth grade Academic Archer at Chandler HS in Oklahoma, who scored 295 (25 tens).
The top teams in the 3D event went to Benton Elementary with a score of 1645 (81 tens), Caudill Middle School with a score of 1713 (116 tens), and Bullitt Central High School with a score of 1729 (122 tens).
To date, NASP has awarded $1.6 million dollars in cash scholarships to NASP students to use for any post-high school education of their choosing. Seventeen male and female archers, were determined at the Eastern and Western National Tournaments held in Louisville and Salt Lake City. They competed in a scholarship shoot-off at this year’s World Tournament.
Each archer shot five practice arrows and five scored arrows at 15 meters.
Scholarship shoot-off winners and awards include, in the male category, a $20,000 in cash scholarship was awarded to Dalton Hinkle; Caleb Thornton received $15,000; Kaden Christenson, $10,000; Donald Holupka $5,000; Cole Murphy received $2,500. Awards of $1,000 went to Jerod Aycox, Thomas Fletcher, Justin Liveoak and Trenton Meyer.
In the female category, Holly Snow received $20,000; Anna Herbert was awarded $15,000; Breann Holtz, from Western Nationals, won $10,000; Ally Nordell received $5,000; $2,500 went to Maria Zielinski; and awards of $1,000 each went to Dorothy Cobb, Rachel Hatfield and Brooklyn Keck.
“My experience at NASP Worlds was amazing. I never dreamed that I would have this experience as a freshman or that I would end up in the third-place spot,” said Breann Holtz, a ninth grader from Lawton-Bronson Junior/Senior High School, Iowa, after winning $10,000 in the 2018 scholarship shoot-off.
“The scholarship shoot-off was intense, and I am so grateful I was able to participate and hope I will have an opportunity again in the future,” she added. It was her first time to compete in a National or World Tournament after Nationals split into two events, Eastern and Western Nationals.
“Offering NASP archers in the western U.S. an opportunity to participate in a major tournament closer to home is one of the main reasons the Western Nationals was implemented. Breann’s first-time participation and success validates our decision,” said Roy Grimes, NASP CEO and president.
Generous Sponsors, Volunteers
NASP tournament success relies heavily on hard-working volunteers who set-up and work the range from start to finish. Medal-level sponsors provide the necessary equipment to make the competitions a success.
Those sponsors include Mathews, Mission, Genesis Archery, Morrell Targets, Easton Technical Products, Gordon Composites, National Wild Turkey Federation, Easton Foundations, Cabela’s Outdoor Fund, Feradyne Outdoors, Rinehart Targets, BCY, Academy Sports + Outdoors, and EA Promotions.
The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife provided assistance by volunteering and providing conservation officers who kept the World Tournament safe and enjoyable.
With minimal participation from other NASP countries, NASP will make some changes to the World Tournament, possibly offering a remote option to allow other countries a more convenient and affordable way to establish world archer rank in 2019.
For more information regarding NASP tournaments and events, visit www.naspschools.org.
Resources: National Archery in the Schools, Missouri Department of Conservation, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources
About the National Archery in the Schools Program
The National Archery in the Schools Program began with a simple idea—teach kids the basics of archery as a part of school curriculum. Since NASP began in 2002, millions of kids across the nation have participated in the program.
It was created by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources to address the lack of archery in physical education classes at public schools. To date, over 7.5 million youth have participated in nearly 9,000 schools across the United States and in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa.
Nearly everyone—regardless of age, size or physical ability—can succeed at archery. Kids love archery, and archery helps kids excel. Statistics show that school archery programs improve school attendance. increase self-esteem, increase physical activity, relate to subject matter, appeals to all students, gets kids out-of-doors and can become an after-school activity.
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