Ozark JROTC Achieves 4 Simultaneous National Championships
The 2020-21 school year is one for the history books for the Ozark High School JROTC program, which received not one, not two, not three, but four national championships.
“A national championship is an incredible achievement. There are over 1,700 Army JROTC programs. In the all-service competitions, there are over 3,400 JROTC programs eligible to compete,” JROTC Raider instructor MAJ. Danny Cazier said. “Achieving simultaneous national championships in a single sport is also extremely uncommon. Achieving simultaneous national championships in different sports is even more rare. Simultaneous national championships in three different sports is almost beyond belief. Achieving four national championships total in a single year is just surreal.”
The OHS JROTC now holds the national championship title in the following categories:
- Raider Mixed Team, U.S. Army JROTC Raider National Championships, Feb. 27
- Rifle Sporter Team, U.S. Army Service Air Rifle National Championships, March 27-28
- Ozark Mountainettes Unarmed Drill Team, All-Service National High School Drill Team Championships, May 1
- Ozark Mountain Guard Armed Drill Team, All-Service National High School Drill Team Championships, May 1
“I am proud of these athletes. Their hard work, dedication and commitment resulted in our national championship this year,” said 1SG William Crawford, who leads the rifle team.
Under Crawford’s direction, the New Shooter Team also received a national championship title this year, as the team won the nationwide New Shooter League Competition for the fourth consecutive year.
Consistently placing in the top 10 in the nation in all their respective fields, the Ozark JROTC instructors knew their teams had the talent, determination and drive to bring Ozark multiple simultaneous national championships, but seeing it become a reality was certainly unexpected.
“As we began our year we knew we had to work unbelievably hard to make every moment count,” drill team instructor CW3 Jason Allen said. “I put a challenge to both my Armed and Unarmed teams to show up everyday, budget time for personal growth and excellence every morning, and we will achieve success. As the year progressed, I started to see something incredibly special within both teams.”
The teams were faced with many challenges and changes this year, considering the COVID-19 pandemic, but that didn’t deter them from continuing their tradition of excellence.
“At Ozark, with a school district determined to provide every opportunity for normalcy and with teams equally determined to seize every opportunity for achievement, our cadets will remember 2020-2021 very differently than the rest of the nation,” Cazier said. “Rather than this being a lost year in their development, it will mark this most unprecedented achievement.”
The members of these national championship teams are:
Raiders – Mixed-Gender Division: Elliott Godwin, Josiah Tonsing, Dylan Fritz, Matthew Smith, Brendan Murphy-Simpson, Braden Loehr, Gage Stout, Abigail Cassell, Chloe Lovett, Kopelyn DeLong, Sarah Cazier, Clarice Wheeler, Jocelyn Davison
Air Rifle – Sporter Category: Sydney Broussard, Hanna McConnell, Rachael Hartzell, Matthew Crawford, Elijah Glenn
Drill – Unarmed Division: Morgan Curtis, Jocelyn Davison, Shy Due, Sarah Hale, Meredith Hatley, Chelle Holbert, Kylie Irby, Madisyn Miller, Kynnace Pulley, Halina Rosario, Faith Shepard, Paige Simmons, Kaylin Spradling, Halle Thompson, Bailey Whittemore, Summer Williams, Mackenzie Wilson, Mackenzie Wofford, Peyton Wofford
Drill – Armed Division: Cory Chadwick, Braxton Chavis, Stephen Hernandez, Alexander Jackson, Isaac Kanowsky, William Lumley, Joel Massey, Jonathan Mcgee, Tyler Merchant, Nathan Moore, Shawn Myers, Luke Oxner, Dustin Pike, Jacob Priest, Alixander Yen