Art of the arrow: Moffat County 4-H archers set for state shoot
The members of the Sliver Slingers certainly don’t bow to pressure.
The Moffat County 4-H archery team has its roster set for August’s state shooting sports competition in Pueblo following this week’s completion shoot for the season.
Representing Northwest Colorado will be 24 of Moffat County’s most skilled archers, who had to adjust to a new element of competition this year: 3-D targets.
“Some of the kids were a little nervous about it, but they all did really good,” said coach Sarah Polly. “Normally it’s strictly paper, but 3-D’s are a lot more fun for them. It’ll be a good change for them, gives them something else to shoot. Should be an improvement.”
Winning the junior compound unlimited competition during the completion shoot Sunday at Wyman Living History Museum was Kelsey McDiffett, followed by Brook Wheeler, Garrett Stockman, Faith Berkey and Blake Duncan. Juniors for the compound limited team will consist of Caitlyn Adams, Alexander Nichols, Zackery Durham, Cody Eckhoff, Haley Boatman and CJ Berkey.
The lone junior shooter to go on to state in the recurve limited category is Kimber Wheeler. Likewise Brandon Madsen will be the only senior for Moffat County in recurve, shooting in the traditional competition.
Senior compound limited will be filled out by Kyla Pogline, Zach Soron, Tahoe Chenoweth, Laadan Rothermund and Hunter Nitzel.
Pogline and Soron joked that the two of them were both trying to outdo each other on the archery pitch, finishing first and second, respectively.
They each agreed that the 3-D targets also offered a new test.
“The yardages are a little hard to guess, but it’s kind of what it’ll be like at state,” Soron said.
Both have been to the state level before, but Pogline said she is less focused on competition than the healing qualities of the sport.
“It’s definitely relaxing, like stress relief,” she said. “You get to come out here, and it’s quiet and relaxing instead of high-paced.”
Winning the senior compound unlimited was Cutter Polly, who will be joined at state by Nick Pugh, Tatam Hickman, Jaci McDiffett, Brittany Schulze and Winter Rogers.
The state competition will be a poignant one for Cutter, who completed his final go at the national level in 4-H archery at the end of June in Grand Island, Nebraska, where he placed eighth overall.
“It’s a little more mellow, a lot less tension here,” he said of being back at the local level.
Due to age restrictions, he will not be able to compete at nationals again if he were to qualify for next summer’s event. Even so, he plans to hold nothing back at state during the Aug. 19 and 20 competition and is already eyeing a big goal.
“I’m gonna take first,” he said.