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Picayune’s archery squad holds its own against top teams

Picayune’s Maroon Tide archery team keeps improving and came in fourth place out of 10 teams last week at a meet featuring some of the best programs in southern Mississippi.

Powerhouses like D’Iberville, Oak Grove and St. Martin were all in attendance, but Picayune was able to hold its own with a squad containing numerous first-year archers.

“Actually, considering how we fared I thought we did pretty good. We improved our scores again. That was what I looked at more than anything, and we got an idea of what other teams in the south (are capable of),” Coach Bryan Edwards said.

Numerous underclassmen, and even some middle schoolers, make up part of the Maroon Tide archery team.

The early season meets serve as a way for these inexperienced team members to get used to competitive archery and become more comfortable in the environment itself.

As the season goes on, Edwards is expecting his young archers to settle in while continuing to improve.

“That’s going to come. With each match they get a little more comfortable. One thing you want to look for is someone not developing bad habits. They can get frustrated because they go backwards. My younger kids are really starting to step up and I’ve been really pleased. The future looks bright for our archery team,” Edwards said.

The squad’s steady improvement and ability to compete with top tier programs has Edwards looking forward to the rest of the season.

However, even with all the positives that have come out of the season so far, there are still plenty of areas where Edwards thinks his archers can get better.

“They just need to work on technique. Some of it is technique and some of it is patience. They’re just sharpening their skills. There’s so much involved in it, like your stance, your release. Sometimes it’s just simple things like breathing, just relaxing and even how tight you grip the bow sometimes will cause an arrow to stray off. You’re trying to get in a rhythm of shooting,” Edwards said.