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    Tri-Valley archery makes seventh trip to Nationals

    By Anya Joseph,

    23 days ago

    RENNER, S.D. (KELO) — The Tri-Valley archery team is a part of the National Archery in the Schools Program, and they’ve earned their seventh trip to Nationals, following a strong showing at the State Tournament.

    110 kids in fourth through 12th grade began preparing in December for the state tournament. The Tri-Valley team earned a trip to state in Spearfish during the last week of March, where they were able to participate in two disciplines: bullseye target shooting and shooting a series of 3-D animals at different distances.

    “Each individual kid is scored and then also the top individuals, the top 12 for each group count as our team. So our top 12 team scores count for the team competition. And that’s if you win first or second place at State, that qualifies your team to go to Nationals,” Tri-Valley Archery board president Mike Harstad.

    After claiming 32 team and individual trophies at state, the team claimed a spot in the National Tournament in Sandy, Utah. The unique thing about the program, is all teams participate without the use of sites to help with aiming.

    “You have to line up the string with your arrow, whereas with your other bow, with a sight, you’re going to have a circle that you just have to line up. So it’s a lot easier to do, which can be tricky for some archers who are just starting off,” Tri-Valley archer Gracie Pedersen said.

    “And what’s really unique about this program is that the kids all shoot the same bow. They shoot same bow, they shoot the same arrows. So anyone can do this. You can’t buy your way to success in this program,” Harstad said.

    Another trip to the National Tournament, means a new city to explore for the Mustangs.

    “We’ve been to South Carolina, Kentucky, Nashville, we’ve been to multiple different places. And I think this year the world is in Florida. So we’re just hoping to advance to that world level and kind of turn it into a little vacation. And I know it’s really important to not only me, but to a lot of the other archers,” Pedersen said.

    The US Western Nationals will begin Friday and conclude Saturday. Harstad says the team has been making their way to Utah since Monday.

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