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Stover, Blaney take first places in regional archery tournament
ATEC places third in high school division
Archery Tournament 2
Four members of Leslie M. Stover Middle Schools (LSMS) archery team aim and shoot at targets 15 meters away during Saturdays Region 2 National Archery in Schools Program tournament in Lugoff-Elgin High Schools gym. LSMS placed first in the middle school division. Blaney Elementary School placed first among elementary schools. A team from ATEC placed third in the high school division. - photo by Martin L. Cahn

Archery teams from Leslie M. Stover Middle School (LSMS) and Blaney Elementary School (BES) placed first in the middle and elementary school division, respectively, during a regional tournament Saturday. A team from the Applied Technology Education Campus (ATEC) placed third in the high school division.

LSMS, BES and ATEC’s teams were among 15 which competed starting at 9 a.m. Saturday inside Lugoff-Elgin High School’s (L-EHS) gym. The S.C. Region 2 National Archery in Schools Program (NASP) tournament, sponsored and officiated by the S.C. Department of Natural Resources, ended with an awards ceremony at 4 p.m. Saturday marked the first time a Kershaw County school hosted a regional tournament. While L-EHS served as the tournament’s site, LSMS and BES served as officials hosts.

DNR 1st Sgt. Ryan L. Bass said just under 400 students participated in Saturday’s competition.

“Each round consists of eight ‘flights’ trying to hit 24 targets for a total of 192 arrows being fired at the same time,” Bass said.

The eight “flights,” according to LSMS Asst. Archery Coach Grace Robinette, are made up of a practice flight and three scored flights each from 10 meters and then again from 15 meters from the targets.

In addition to honoring the top three schools in each division, Bass said trophies were handed out to the top three boys and top three girls in each division. The top male and female archers were furthered honored with new bicycles, he said.

Some participants in Saturday’s tournament have been handling bows and arrows most of their lives. Olivia Stillwell, LSMS’s head archery coach, said some members on ATEC’s team have been competitors in the sport since attending BES.

“They’ve been at it since 3rd grade; some of the Stover archers, too,” Stillwell said.

Among local competitors, ATEC’s Andrew Arledge and Julia Catoe won third place for boys and second place for girls, respectively, in the high school division. LSMS’s Jase Jackson won second place for boys among middle schoolers. Four Blaney archers placed in the elementary school division: Manning Frye, first place for boys, earning a new bow; Mary Manning, second place for boys; McKenna Perito, second place for girls; and Amber Garland, third place for girls.

Saturday’s competition served as one of four regional tournaments being held in South Carolina during February. Saturday and Sunday, the Region 4 tournament will be held in North Myrtle Beach. The Region 1 tournament will be held in Anderson on Feb. 18. Mid-Carolina Middle/High School, in Prosperity, will host the Region 3 tournament Feb. 21.

Bass said the four tournaments will feature a total of 17,650 students. The S.C. State Tournament will be held March 25 and 26 in Sumter. The 2015 NASP National Tournament will take place May 7-9 in Louisville, Ky., with the World Tournament held July 25 in Nashville, Tenn.