This year the Buena High School Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps, or JROTC, was introduced to a new sport. The 2013/14 school year is the first time JROTC has an archery team. It is open to all Buena High School students interested in joining. The group practices on Tuesday and Thursday after school on the BHS football field.
Retired Sgt. Maj. Monty McDaniel heads up the JROTC program and started the team after he went through a training session and got free equipment.
“I started the archery team this year,” McDaniel said. “I saw an ad in one of my wildlife magazines from the Arizona Game & Fish [Department] that if you are involved in youth groups and would attend an eight-hour training session, they would give you $3,000 worth of archery equipment. I went to Phoenix and took the class.
“That was January 2013. They delivered the equipment around March. We began practicing this summer and got serious this year.
“We have about 20 students on the team,” McDaniel added. “Any Buena student can join — we have five non-JROTC students on the team.”
There are 15 JROTC cadets on the team.
On Jan. 18, they went to their most recent competition at Vail Middle School in Tucson. Ten cadets attended.
Two hundred students on 20 teams from different schools competed in the event.
Buena High School JROTC cadets took first and second place. BHS sophomore Cpl. Isabella Mayne, 16, took 1st place with a score of 272, and 2nd Lt. Suzette Jaggars, 17, a junior, took 2nd place with a score of 262.
The cadets enjoy shooting arrows and trying to improve their score each time. They say they enjoy it very much and look forward to having more competitions.
“We are hosting a meet at Buena on February 8 from 10 a.m. until noon,” McDaniel said. “The team is doing very well. I expect to be the top team in the state by next year. The students really seem to enjoy archery. As long as they are motivated, we will continue to do it.”