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Magna Vista JROTC Raiders win Best of Best Championship

LEFT TO RIGHT, FRONT: Caleb Motley, Kolby Quigg, Jordan Ramsey, Kaitlyn Silvers, Skye Davis, Savannah Greer LEFT TO RIGHT, BACK: David Sharpe, Aaron Woods, Trinity Davis, Zach Gilbert, Enrique O’Campo

On Saturday, April 13, the Magna Vista JROTC Raider Team captured its first “Best of The Best” (BOB) Raider Championship. The competition includes the top teams from Delaware, Washington, D.C, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. These states cover the JROTC Cadet Command’s Fourth Brigade, which consist of states from the central east coast of the United States. Teams must earn their spot to compete in the Best of The Best Raider Championship. They earn their right to compete throughout the year by attending qualifying meets and then must be invited to the Best of The Best Championship. Only the top teams from each state are invited. Magna Vista’s JROTC Raiders earned their berth by winning the Virginia Mixed Team State Championship in November of 2018 along with being the top team in other qualifiers throughout the year (the Warrior Raiders won three of the four qualifying meets they attended). MVHS was one of the favorites going into the day, but did not have a championship performance three weeks ago, finishing third in a qualifier. Team Commander Jordan Ramsey worked hard to ensure his team was physically and mentally prepared for this meet, saying, “Having a mixed team, 5 males and 4 females, brings different strategic challenges. This team embraced the challenge and bonded preparing mentally and physically, for this meet.” The key to the Warriors’ championship was consistency throughout the day, finishing in the top three of all five events. They brought home a first place in the Logistic Relay, second place in the Team Physical Fitness Challenge (TPFC) and One Rope Bridge and third in the 5K Road March and Litter Carry events. All teams started the day with a 5K run. It was a grueling run on a wet and raining day. Magna Vista managed a tie for 3rd place. This is a team event; the time does not stop until the last member crosses the finish line. All members must also stay within 20 meters of each other during the 3.2 miles. Enrique O’Campo and Jordan Ramsey were the driving force during this event by encouraging and physically assisting teammates. The entire team gave everything they had to secure the third-place finish with a time of 27 minutes 29 seconds. The next event was the TPFC. During this event, each team member had to carry a 5-gallon water can full of water 20 meters, then negotiate a low crawl, run up a hill through the woods, then negotiate a hurdle. After the hurdle, the team was then pulled together to carry a log approximately 30 meters, around a cone and back. Once the log was in place, the team had to run the course (approximately ½ mile in length) in reverse. Since it was a muddy day, strategy was key. Knowing the course would only get worse throughout the day, the Warrior leaders decided to complete this event first before it really got worn down and muddy. The strategy paid off, with a time of 4 minutes 15 seconds - 6 seconds behind the leader. The litter carry was the next event of the day. This event consisted of the raiders carrying two litters with simulated weights of casualties of 120 pounds approximately ¼ of a mile. Throughout the course were obstacles to overcome. The first obstacle was to lift the litters over a 6-foot-high obstacle, run to a low crawl and drag the litter 10 meters, then run through the woods going up and down inclines, over downed trees and up hills. Magna Vista Raiders finished with a time of 1 minute 48 seconds - 5 seconds behind the leader. After a well-deserved 40-minute break, the raider team then tackled the logistic relay. During this event the team had to run down a 50 yard hill, pick up a boat and ammo case weighing 75 pounds, carry both to a launch point, place the ammo case in the boat, row the boat across a pond, hand the ammo case off to two teammates waiting on the other side, then get the ammo case and boat back to their original positions and run back up the hill to the finish line. The course was approximately ¼ mile long with a hurdle and other ground obstacles. After David Sharpe and Aaron Woods placed the ammo box in the boat, Kolby Quigg and Jordan Ramsey rowed the boat to the far shore where Enrique O’Campo pulled the ammo box out of the boat. O’Campo, Sharpe and Woods took turns carrying the ammo box back to its original position. Once Ramsey and Quigg rowed the boat back to the near shore, Kaitlyn Silvers, Skye Davis and Trinity Davis were waiting to pull the boat out of the water and carry it back to its original position. The group’s teamwork paid off by finishing with a time of 2 minutes and 12 seconds - the fastest time of the meet. The last event of the day was the one rope bridge, historically one of the best events for Magna Vista Raider teams. During this event, the members have 14-foot rope they must tie as swiss seats and a 100 foot long rope they must use to construct a bridge between two trees 52 feet apart so that each member can cross the rope bridge. At the end, the team must take all knots out of the rope. Skye Davis led the way, tying her seat and taking the rope to the far side in preparation for securing it to a tree. Davis is considered one of the fastest in 4th Brigade and it was no difference on this day as she was documented completing her initial task in 20 seconds. As Davis completed her task, Quigg and Savannah Greer prepared the rope with a transport knot in preparation for the tightening of the rope. Davis then wrapped the rope around the tree on her side and the team then pulled the rope to tighten it for crossing. Upon completion of the crossing of all team members, Ramsey and Davis untied the knots and broke down the bridge. Despite two unchartered 10 second penalties, the Warrior Raider team brought home a second place finish with a total time of 1 minute 59 seconds. After a long season, it is very difficult for a team to remain focused. This was a great way to end a stellar career for Ramsey, who has led the team to three state titles and now a Best of the Best Championship. He has been on the Raider team for all four years of his high school career and Raider Commander for the past two seasons. Other seniors on the team who will be greatly missed for their hard work and leadership are Skye Davis and Zach Gilbert. Davis has been on the Raider team three years; she was determined to help this team strive to be the best pushing herself and teammates throughout the year with heart and determination. Gilbert, though in his first year, brought a great deal of maturity and leadership to the team. He was an integral part of their success during the second part of the season.

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