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2009 National Target Championships

and US Open

August 1 - 8, 2009

Hamilton, Ohio


Results            Photo Gallery


by Gary Yamaguchi 

Perspective from a Judge's point of view:

When the call came out to volunteer for judging duty, I accepted as a test of my children’s independence.  Both of my children who compete in target archery appear to have matured enough to take care of themselves, and rather than hover over them I decided to see how well it would work.

The first day I was assigned to watch the practice line on the adult field, and to inspect recurve equipment.  Pretty normal inspections, except for the fact that the equipment being inspected belonged to the top archers in the US.  Top archers, yes, and all were very nice, normal people.  A few odd pieces warranted a check on the rules – were vibration dampeners allowed on limbs of barebows?  (No…)  Was an optical fiber allowed on a clicker?  (Yes.)  Was it OK for a nail on the bottom of a sight bar (a Clout sight) to coexist with an open (FITA) aperture?  (Not at the same time.)

When we learned that the youth field had only two judges, I was sent to assist there.  One of the judges had a potential conflict with athletes he was coaching, and I had conflicts with my two kids – so National Judge Jane Johnson was kept pretty busy making calls on the bales for which the conflicts existed.  I learned some things from Judge Jane.  During a triangular argument over the placement of a scope on the field, which had my head spinning in three different directions (archer 1, archer 2, coach), she came over, asked, “So, what’s the problem here?”  Then she calmly reached over, grabbed the scope, removed it from the line, and then stated that they could sort it out afterwards.  Done deal.  She also relayed her view of being a judge, saying (paraphrased), “Our role is to protect these archers’ scores…”  I’d never quite understood it like that.  It gave me an entirely new perspective!

Other interesting dilemmas:  Double pass-throughs on the first shots of the 4th day – thankfully both shots were good ones (X and 9) and replace the bale.  Archers trading individual targets at the 30 m distance and not telling anyone until after they shot their first end.  

Team rounds for Male Compound and Female Recurve senior divisions were held on the youth field Thursday, August 6 following the cessation of the day’s youth half-FITA.  Male Recurve and Female Compound team competitions were held the following day.  Any three archers, including Cadet archers, could enter as a team, but only those shooting the Junior and Senior FITA rounds were given seeded positions.  The International divisions featured matches between the Taiwan and the US teams, with the US teams winning both the men’s and women’s medals. 

Judging the team rounds was fast and furious, with far too much action going on to watch every athlete’s change-over, foot position, and arrow extraction.  Patterns soon emerged, however, and yellow cards were shown, usually on the second offense.  Sometimes I noticed the first offense while standing four teams away, and it would have been impractical and distracting to have shown the yellow card across the other teams.  However, the archers were watched again from a closer position during the next end, with my yellow card at the ready.  Only a few infractions were noted, however, mainly from archers withdrawing their arrows before crossing the shooting line, or having two team members simultaneously having one or more feet on the ground in front of the one-meter line. 

All in all, serving as a field judge at a national tournament was a fun and rewarding experience.  Much more fun than agonizing over my kids’ scores.  Both kids shot personal bests without my “help.”  I expect it will be the first of many national judging experiences for me!  My only regret – it’s tough to take photos (as well as ill-advised) when you are watching the line.  The reader will have to find their photos taken by Beth Luman here:





So how did the Arizona contingent do?  Bowman female recurve Karissa Yamaguchi shot her first 1300 (a 1322) and finished 2nd, while older brother Nathan Yamaguchi (Cadet) also finished 2nd despite posting a personal best at 30 m.  Junior female compound Mackenzie Kieborz won 3rd place after the double FITA, and was 4th in the Olympic Rounds competing against the combined Junior/Senior women’s field!  (Way to go Mackenzie!)  She won a one-arrow shoot-off in the ¼ finals, 9 to 7.  Tony Don (now a Senior men’s recurve) was 11th after the FITA, and 14th in the combined Junior/Senior men’s OR. 

Sun Devil Archery Coach Kari Jill Granville won the Shenk award for the second straight year for the female recurve archer with the best combined scores at the US Indoor Nationals, National Field Championships, and US Target Nationals.  OTC Resident Archer Brady Ellison was named the Shenk award recipient for the best all-around male recurve archer.  

The awards ceremony concluded with an announcement that the 2010 US Target Nationals would be hosted again by Butler County, Ohio.

Dual Olympic gold medalist Darrel Pace then served as disk jockey for a dance.