Cherokee NJROTC Cadets Score Victories in Duck Island Individual Orienteering Competition | Rogersville

KINGSPORT — Cherokee High School’s NJROTC won the top medals for the boys’ and girls’ individual competition on Saturday as the NJROTC Volunteer High School held its 10th annual Duck Island Orienteering Meet at Warriors Path State Park.

The Duck Island meet is open to JROTC cadets who have never participated in orienteering before. More than 100 cadets from all over East Tennessee and North Carolina participated in the event.

JROTC units participating in the competition included Volunteer, Cherokee, Tennessee High School, Daniel Boone High School, David Crockett High School, Science Hill High School, Oak Ridge High School, and McDowell High School in Marion, NC.

Cherokee cadet Carter Rhine was the winner in the men’s individual competition category, ahead of Gabriel Cross of Daniel Boone, and Atlas Batten, Daniel Boone

Cherokee’s Melody Wichelns won the women’s individual competition ahead of Daniel Boone’s Nanchaya Bailey and Daniel Boone’s Laure Cox.

Daniel Boone’s boys took the tag team victory ahead of Cherokee in second and Science Hill in third.

Daniel Boone’s daughters took the tag team victory ahead of Oak Ridge in second and Cherokee in third.

Orienteering is a sport that can be practiced by anyone, regardless of age, physical condition or skill level. The sport began in Scandinavia in the 1800s and had found its place as a competitive sport in the United States by 1946.

Participants are helped with both a map and a compass through outdoor terrain of varying difficulty in order to locate each marker listed on the given map.

While orienteering relies on athletic ability, it relies more on the participant’s ability to gauge distance, think under pressure, and correctly analyze the area around them.

A participant may have the best time on the course, but without being able to correctly locate each point, he will lose any orienteering competition indefinitely.

The Duck Island Orienteering Course consists of seventeen markers spread throughout the park; for each incorrectly located point that a participant would mark on his score card, a time penalty of fifteen minutes would be imposed.

In order for each cadet to show that they had correctly located each marker, a punch was placed at each individual marker for the cadet to mark a score card. If a participant scores three or more points incorrectly on the scorecard, they will be disqualified from the competition.

Although orienteering is an individual sport, the top cadets from each school are added together to make up the scores for the men’s and women’s teams. Medals were awarded to each cadet who placed in the top three individual male and female categories. Trophies were awarded to each male and female team that placed 1st and 3rd.

Dino J. Dotson