The 25th – 26th February was an eventful weekend for UCC archery. For yet another year UCC ran the National Student Indoor Championships, and this year the turnout was amazing. Ninety-eight people took part, with 94 qualifying students and 4 guests. This is a fantastic increase from last year, and a great indication for the overall interest and take up of Archery in colleges around Ireland.
The National Student Indoor Championship is among the largest student intervarsities in Ireland, and took place in Nemo Rangers. The format of the competition is different to the IVs league, with a qualifying round on the Saturday to set up ranking and head-to-heads on the Sunday. The divisions for the weekend were Compound, Recurve and Barebow in both male and female categories.
Emily Phipps was the stand-out UCC player this weekend, as she topped her division on Saturday, and took the top ranking in the Barebow female division. This was a great encouragement to all UCC players, as we started out the Sunday head-to-heads with attack and determination.
In the head-to-heads Emily herself, got through to the second round, but just missed out in progressing to final. This wasn’t the end, though, as she then progressed into the 3rd/4th bracket against UCC’s own Amy Garde, and came out in 3rd place.
UCC beginners Mary Hennessy and Sam Drugan both progressed passed the first round of their divisions, beating higher ranked players. Sadly they were not as successful in their second matches, but their phenomenal effort should be congratulated.
Amy Garde made a memorable moment for both spectators and players alike in her first round of the head-to-heads. With a 5-5 score, it went into a shoot-off: with 40 seconds to shoot one arrow, both Amy and her opponent shot after the buzzer, meaning that they both had to shoot again. Now, the pressure was on as they were the only two standing up to the line to shoot; the buzzers went, they both shot beforehand, and as they got closer to the targets it became clear that the two arrows seemed to be at an identical distance from the middle. The judge had to measure the distance, and there was only a millimetre or so in the difference, and Amy progressed through to the next round.
Carla Reinhardt, Vice-Captain of UCC Archery, progressed through her first couple of rounds with relative ease, until she came up against the top female archer in Ireland. Carla was matching to her end for end, however, one shot was that little bit too low, and Carla was not as successful in that match.
For the lads there was quite some fierce competition, as 44 players took part in the recurve male division on the Sunday head-to-heads. There was some fantastic competition, and everyone did very well, but sadly UCC players missed out on progressing farther then the 3rd of 6 rounds.
There was a massive 15 players from UCC, with 4 non-competing players taking a huge part in the running of the competition. Therefore, as a sign-off, UCC Archery would like all of those, both on and off the committee, for helping out with setup, organisation and take down.
Special thanks to Simon Henleywillis, who was key in the smooth running of the weekend, and to Morgain Siede, Yusuf Fauzi and David Hurley who, even though they were not taking part, were there over the weekend to be on hand and help out with whatever was needed!
Here is to next year’s Nationals which we hope will be bigger and better than this years.