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DECATUR, Alabama - Today culminated the events of Outdoor Nationals as youth archers earned Grand National Champion titles for participation in today's team round competition and average placement from two days of qualification and elimination matches.
The archers who shot through this entire event faced heat, wind, rain, and weather delays pushing shooting well past sundown - it was a great event, but a tough competition. It took great perseverance, focus and determination for all archers to complete the event and all who did should be very proud.
Jacob Reed won the Grand National Champion title for the barebow bowman men after just three years of shooting archery. He commented: "I kept doing pull backs all the days before we came here. It felt great to win." For other kids thinking about shooting Nationals, Jacob added: "Try your best and keep going, don't get discouraged."
Compound cub Jessarae Klatt finished with two gold medals and a bronze to sweep her second consecutive Grand National Champion win. "It was really fun, the rain kind of slowed things up, but I was here last year and won this in the bowman division and now I won again as a cub. I focused on just going through the motions and when I get stressed out going back to the basics. I think the competition helped me, there were a lot of girls I shot with last year and they were back here this year and I think that made it more fun."
Alexa Ruiz is on a winning streak in one of the most competitive brackets. After winning gold at the SoCal Showdown last month in front of a large crowd, she took the Grand National Champion title today for the compound cadet women. "My grandpa passed this year and I finally accepted it and have been able to shoot more and relax instead of trying to make him happy. When I actually got back to myself, I just started doing my usual shooting and got better. I've been practicing every day, no matter how hot it is."
As USA Archery wraps another Outdoor Nationals event, we extend a heartfelt thank you to the Decatur CVB and community for their efforts to help make this event so successful. For more, follow USA Archery on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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