UPDATE – Carson Alexander competed in the NFAA Nationals Feb. 10 thru 12th in Las Vegas, Nevada and he placed 11th out of 35 in his age division!!
Carson was able to meet and greet Levi Morgan as well as Dan McCarthy and his wife Emily, Jesse Broadwater and Brady Ellison! Levi, Dan, Emily and Jesse are all Pro shooters for Mathews Archery and they all signed Carson’s bow, which will be retired and replaced with a new target bow. Carson also had an evening of shooting with the pros and had them all sign a t-shirt. In addition, there were money shoots, a trade show for 4 days, and there were fellow shooters from Yankton, SD he reunited with. Carson made new friends in Vegas, and there were experiences and memories of a lifetime. His mom, Shelley said, “What an awesome, awesome experience and we are already looking forward to next year!”
As a tune-up for the NFAA National Championships, Carson Alexander competed in the NM State Archery Championships in Albuquerque the weekend of February 4th and finished first in the Bowman Class in his division, age 8 through 11 year-old.
Special to KRTN
Carson Alexander has only been shooting archery for about a year, but the 10-year-old son of Matt and Shelley Alexander of Raton is now preparing for the 2017 National Field Archery Association (NFAA) Championships in Las Vegas, Nevada. Held at the South Point Hotel & Casino on February 10 thru 12, the national shoot will attract over 3000 competitors, with the range of skill from novice to world champions with over $450,000 in cash payouts and witnessed by over 10,000 spectators.
The rise to be one of the top young archers began last June when he entered the 4H Colfax County Shoot at the NRA Whittington Center and finished in First Place individually and helped his team win the First Place trophy. Practicing every day, he entered the District Shoot at the end of June and took First Place Individual and Second Place Team and from then on there was no turning back, he was hooked. After a fourth place finish in Albuquerque, Carson competed in the Rocky Mountain State Games in Colorado Springs, where he brought home the gold medal in his age division. In August, he won the 3D buckle shoot(youth division) out at the NRA and took a 2nd place in Beulah, Co at the Pioneer Bowman 3D shoot in his age division.
In September, Carson and his parents decided to test the waters and registered him for the National Outdoor Target championships in Yankton, SD. They went there not expecting to place very well due to the fact that Carson had only been shooting 7 months, but they went with the mindset of to just have fun and enjoy the experience. There were over 300 competitors ranging in age from 9 to 70, and with winds gusting over 45mph, rain blowing sideways and competing against kids who had been shooting 2-4 years, but at the end of 2 days of stiff competition, Carson placed 3rd and brought home a bronze medal!
Carson Alexander, was born in Omaha NE and moved to Raton in June of 2012. He attends Raton Intermediate School and is in the 4th grade.
He had played baseball and soccer at the age of 4 until he was 8 and he decided he wanted to try something different. He joined the Johnson Mesa 4H club in the fall of 2015 and registered for the shooting sports. For his project he decided would shoot .22 rifle. At the last minute of the March deadline (and a little twist of his arm from mom and dad) he decided to add archery to his list of projects for 4H. In February of 2016, they purchased his first bow and discovered Humphries Archery in Pueblo, Co. Humphries is the largest indoor archery range in the state of Colorado. He was signed up for beginner classes there since he had no experience with archery much before then, but by April, the owner of Humphries, Gene Ragulsky, had become familiar with Carson and had noticed his underlying talent and desire for archery.
In October, Ragulsky developed a JOAD (Junior Olympic Archery Development) club for kids ages 8-20. They meet twice a week for archery practice and those that want to, can compete at the monthly JOAD competitions in the Denver/Springs area. Carson competes at these and any other competitions his parents can find to sign him up for.
Carson and his parents are looking forward to being a part of the Las Vegas event and to enjoy the experience and he is hoping he can meet one of his archery idols, Levi Morgan.
His parents couldn’t be more proud of Carson and his dedication and accomplishments. Without the 4H experience and introduction into archery, and the guidance and coaching of Gene Ragulsky at Humphries Archery, Carson would not be where he is at today. The family is grateful for all the help and are looking forward to Carson’s archery future.