By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
THE Bahamas Archery Federation returned from two archery tournaments in the Dominican Republic last week with historic, impressive performances from the Caribbean Developmental Championships and the Central American and Caribbean qualifying tournament.
The team, according to federation president David Rahming, returned home on Sunday with four gold medals, three silver and a bronze medal, in addition to producing a number of best performances.
The Caribbean Developmental Championships was first held in 2017 in Puerto Rico, but it wasn’t until the second version in 2018 that the Bahamas won its first medals. However, after missing the past three years from 2019 to 2022, the federation returned to the championships.
This year was the first time the tournament was held in two years and it was the first time that archers from outside the English-speaking Caribbean were invited. It is also the first time that a Jamaican team has attended the tournament.
Dario Higgs won three gold medals to lead the Bahamas. He shot a 572 in the recurve senior men beginners tournament, which ties the national record set in 2018. He also won a gold medal in the recurve mixed team matches.
Bernado Almira won a gold medal in the Barebow division, which was contested for the first time in this year’s tournament. He was also the first person from Grand Bahama to compete for Team Bahamas internationally.
Lisa Stovel-Rolle became only the second female to compete for Team Bahamas internationally but the first to win any medals at an international event.
She won two silver medals in the compound senior women competitions and a bronze in the mixed team competitions.
Donte Dorelien won a bronze medal in the recurve under 18 division. He and Steven Hanna Jr, who shot in the World Ranking Event tournament, were the youngest members of Team Bahamas.
Leron Rolle was the other member of Team Bahamas to compete in the World Ranking Event tournament.
Both Hanna and Rolle shot well but were eliminated before the final rounds this time, according to Rahming.
Rolle shot this tournament earlier this year in Puerto Rico where he was a member of Team Bahamas, who earned two qualifying spots to the next Central American and Caribbean Games to be held in El Salvador in 2023.
Hanna Jr and Rolle are hopeful of competing in the Pan American Championships to be held in Santiago, Chile this November.
This tournament is the main qualifier for the Pan American Games to be held in 2023.
Rahming, who accompanied the team, said he is very pleased with this year’s performance overall and the progress with the federation in general.
Rahming has served as the president for the past nine years and has seen the federation grow from just a few archers learning the sport and tournament rules to actually becoming very competitive.
He said the archers are now winning medals and turning in competitive performances against world-class athletes in both male and female categories and both recurve and compound disciplines.
Rahming said he hopes to continue with the upward trend in performances in these categories and hopes to add others in the future. He noted that he is eager to include disabled athletes as other countries have done.
“Archery is a sport for everyone and it is growing within the region,” Rahming said. “ It has enormous sports tourism potential as well and The Bahamas is positioned to take every advantage of this.”
The team was sponsored by Robin Hood Flour, distributed by Asa H Pritchard.
Interested persons wishing to join the federation are urged to WhatsApp 525-3799 for training timers in Nassau or contact the YMCA in Grand Bahama for their times on that island.
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