CHARLESTON - The blue trim that outlines the landscape of the exterior of the Charleston Civic Center seemed quite appropriate on Saturday as Ripley High School's archery team won its third straight State Championship.
Ripley has won three State Championships in a row and six overall. In 2006 the tournament was only an individual event and Viking Nathan Randolph brought home the championship.
Over 700 shooters from 27 schools were on hand and 1200 spectators watched as the tournament, now in its eighth year, was again conquered by the Vikings.
This year, for the first time, qualifying tournaments were held at schools, and scores were submitted online. A record 858 students participated.
The Archery in the Schools Tournament is open to schools that received Division of Natural Resources-sponsored training.
Ripley racked up (3372) points breaking last years Viking mark of (3369) which are both tournament scoring records.
The Vikings crowned two shooters in Nick Rhodes (291) and Cayla Goodson (288). Levi Staats took a close second to his teammate (290) for a second place finish in the High School Boys Division.
This is Cayla Goodson's third individual State Championship, making her one of Ripley High School's most decorated athletes of all time.
In 2012, Adam Bicak became the school's first four-time wrestling champion and David Hicks joined the ranks of the all-time blue and white greats as a three-time champion, matching the feat of Mitch Smith, now the head wrestling coach at Alderson-Broaddus College.
By winning the State Tournament, Ripley will automatically advance to nationals.
Coaches Tess Gump and Tom Kruk have focused on attention to detail with Ripley's program and made it a model of consistency.
In the scoring department - Nick Nettleton 282, Jacob Williams 282, Jenny Gibbs 280, Carter Fisher 279, Quincy Martin 277, Corey Hill 277, Sarah Evans 276, Scotty Querrey 276, Chantalle Reynolds 274, Garreth Durst 274, Andrea Weese 273, Shayla Butcher 264 and Joe Vest 258.
Alternates for Ripley were Tyler Smith, Faythe Maston, Alyssa Bumpus, Morgan Casto, Merci Casto and Becca Thompson.