If close competition and razor-thin margins are your thing, then the 2016 Stryker Panther Archery Invitational of March 12 was for you. Ten schools toed the firing lines, including representatives from local schools Wauseon, Fayette, Montpelier, Hilltop and the host Stryker teams. When it came time to determine the top five finishers in the high school category, the final tally was home to four ties.
Stryker finished fifth overall in team competition with 3,110 points. The battle for tournament champion came down to a tie at 3,274 between Montpelier and Tinora. The tiebreaking criteria came in the form of centers hit, which fell heavily in the favor of the Rams, putting the Locomotives in second by a 155-143 count.
With 18 centers, Katie Taylor of Montpelier broke a three way tie for third in the high school girls’ division with a score of 278. Logan Dick and Tyler Halferty of Montpelier each fired a 282, but the 15 centers from Dick gave him fourth place over 14 from Halferty. Weston Dick of Montpelier and Luke Holsopple of Stryker closed out the day deadlocked at 283, but Holsopple took second place with an advantage of 18-16 in centers.
In junior high team competition, Stryker placed fifth with 2,578 points, and Montpelier finished second with 2,962.
Landon Fackler, David Bowman and Carter Wade of Montpelier finished fifth, fourth and third respectively in the boys’ class. Their scores echoed those of the high school shooters…close. Wade’s third place finish was only three points better than Fackler’s fifth, as Fackler closed out the event with a 268, with Bowman getting a 270 and Wade a 271.
Timothy Kays may be reached at