At eight years old, Keely Fickel wanted to find a sport she really loved. Like many second graders, she considered soccer or basketball or even joining her local little league.
Instead, she opted for a bow and arrow.
Almost 10 years later, she’s a leader at Ohio’s most prestigious archery program, one that has earned eight state titles, a national title and a world title in the past seven years.
Keely’s dad Scott has been the coach since the team started competing in 2008. Reflecting on the success of his daughter, his other several dozen archers, and the program itself, Scott feels the culture he’s helped build is the most significant victory.
Archers at Logan learn integrity very early on. Kids score themselves at tournaments, trusted by their teammates, coaches, and officials to give an honest total by the competition’s end. Though with how accurate Logan’s archers can be, it wouldn’t even be necessary to lie.
Another success lies in the development of social skills, which many archers seem to lack when they enter the program, according to Scott. Along with little to no athletic experience, some kids join the team without much experience interacting with their peers. Scott believes bettering social skills leads to becoming a better teammate and ultimately, a better archer.
Past greatness is an easy selling point for young archers. That, and there’s a unique fervor for the sport within the community. As archers grow older, like Keely has, and life after Logan beckons, seniors chase college scholarships.
Hocking College is a popular destination for Logan archers pursuing the sport at the next level, providing s
For the time being, though, Keely is just one of Logan’s shooting stars. After nearly 10 years in the program, she’s established lifelong friendships, perfected her craft and set herself up for unique opportunities after high school.
She’s far from the only one. When it comes to achieving goals, Logan’s archers rarely miss the mark.