Louisville, KY — Led by a fourth-place finish in the overall 8th grade girls competition by Millee Mobley, the Wildkittens of Barton Junior High placed 15th out of 275 middle school teams at the National Archery in the Schools National Competition last week. The high score qualifies the team to advance to the NASP Open and Championship, held in Nashville, Tennessee, July 25-27.
The national tournament was held May 9-11, with each division shooting on separate days. Thirty-two states were represented with seven teams from Arkansas in each of the three divisions. Barton Junior High placed the highest of any Arkansas team in its respective division and was one of only 3 middle school teams to have the opportunity to advance to the Open and Championship.
Barton Jr. High scored an impressive 3,328 out of a possible 3,600 points among 12 archers. This was an improvement of their state championship score of 3,294 which won the middle school division in Hot Springs in March and their regional tournament score of 3,249 in February.
Barton’s team was anchored by an outstanding effort from 8th grader Millee Mobley, who scored 292 out of a possible 300 points during competition. This was the fourth best performance out of 900 8th-grade girls and the sixth best score out of 2,559 middle school girls. She and two other Barton middle school archers, Lynley Smith and Jon Brooks Elia, earned individual berths in the Open and Championship as well.
Laura Rogers, regional educator for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission in southeast Arkansas, said, “I know the students and coaches have worked extremely hard and I wish them great success at the world competition.”
Rogers says the team’s coaches, Scot and Brecken Perry, are excited about the opportunity to show their students that hard work is well rewarded, and are looking to find ways to make the trip to Nashville possible this summer.
“They will definitely need financial support to make this next level of competition possible,” Rogers said. “I hope everyone can appreciate what it takes to represent their school, community and state on the world stage and will do what they can to help.”
Members of the Barton Jr. High team include Emily Chisholm, Ava Clark, Catelynn Connor, Justin Dumas, Riley Dumas, Jon Brooks Elia, Becca Hooks, Peyton Howard, Hunter Lawrence, Maggie McDaniel, Caroline Meadows, Keaton Michael, Ramya Miller, Millee Mobley, JT Polk, Lynley Smith, Ben Wilson and Sam York
The 10 Arkansas teams qualifying for the Open and Championship Tournament are:
Elementary Division — Hill Farm Elementary, Charleston Elementary, Eagle Mountain Magnet, South Side School
Middle School Division — Barton Jr. High School, Batesville Junior High School, Bryant Middle School
High School Division — Bergman High School, Cabot High School, Acorn High School