Pearce steals spotlight at Buckmasters

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 3, 2003

The top archers in the nation were at the 2003 Buckmasters Expo for the Top Bow Indoor World Championships, but a young lady from Opp stole the spotlight.

Caitlin Pearce, 13, stole the spotlight when she hit a target on a pop-up deer winning a variety of prizes and the stunned-appreciation of Buckmasters Founder/CEO Jackie Bushman.

Bushman, as he does every year at the Expo, gave a member of the audience the opportunity to take aim with a bow and arrow and shot for the selection of prizes during the final round of the 2003 Top Bow Indoor World Championships.

More than 1,000 spectators were in the stands and Bushman selected the young Pearce due in part to the large reaction of the fans sitting near and around her in the stands.

"Do you think you can hit the target?" Bushman asked Pearce as she stood at the back of the stands with a bow in her hands.

The young lady from Opp seized the opportunity of a lifetime with a nervous "Yes" in reply to Bushman's question.

Bushman interviewed the young lady to find out more about her and then introduced her to the crowd as she walked out to the stand with loud music pumping and smoke hanging in the air around her as she made her entrance.

Pearce took the stand and was told that if she could hit the deer she would win. He told her she did not have to hit the small target on the decoy, but just hit the deer anywhere to take home prizes from White Water, Tinks, Scent-loc, Easton, Daisey, Lacross, Radica, Nikon, Fred Bear and Stream Light.

Pearce took steady aim at the deer after it popped up on her right hand side. Then, with a smooth release sent the arrow flying toward the deer. The arrow did not just hit the deer, Pearce's arrow struck the pad causing the deer to fall.

Bushman, once he got over his obvious shock, encouraged parents to enjoy hunting with their children. Highlights from the 2003 Buckmasters Expo and the Top Bow Indoor World Championships may be seen on TNN on Oct. 25 and Oct. 26.