Recently, student archers from across the state met at Reading Archery Club in Reading, Pennsylvania to compete in the 1st 3-D Regional Qualifier of the 2021 competition season. Participation numbers for Pennsylvania S3DA continue to grow, as this event set a record for the most participants at a Pennsylvania 3-D regional event to date. While the event was competitive among the S3DA teams, all the archers and coaches were incredibly supportive, especially with the younger shooters. Some of the experienced parents even stepped up to help the less experienced kids with shooting tips and scoring.
Bob Lauffer, Reading Archery Club coach stated, “This was our first 3-D shoot of the year. We had many competitors from our club but ten of them were in their first S3DA 3-D shoot. What always impresses me is how quickly the kids are assigned to a group to shoot and then they form a bond within just a matter of minutes. Each of the groups were celebrating one another on a good shot or helping to put a bad shot behind them. It is a wonderful phenomenon and one that I will never get tired of witnessing.”
Gabriel Hickey is an Eagle Olympic Recurve archer from Grass Hollow Archery who has only been shooting archery for a little over three months. This was Gabriel’s first 3-D competition, and he said his favorite target was “the Carp”. When we asked him what his biggest surprise was for his first 3-D archery experience, he stated, “I thought this was a flat course. I didn’t realize that it was up and down, but I still had a blast, and I did better than I ever thought I would.”
All of the archers displayed outstanding performances as they took on a particularly challenging course with many differences in elevation. When speaking with parents and coaches, the biggest takeaway from the day was the hospitality from the tournament host and the sportsmanship that each archer displayed. Atglen Sportsmen’s Club coach, Christopher Bannister commented, “This organization is like a family helping each other out no matter what. This is truly an amazing experience and something to be proud to be a part of!”