July 3, 2008 · Updated 6:04 PM
"Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods spent years practicing and perfecting their respective sports before they got close to an NBA or PGA championship.Olivia Anderson, 10, started competing in her sport in April and she already has one national championship under her belt. Shes hoping more are to come. Anderson, an Oak Harbor fifth grader, has participated in eight tournaments since she got into archery about five months ago. Of those eight, Anderson took first place in six of them.I like the competition and recognition, she said. Its exciting.Her dad, Matt Anderson, is secretary/treasurer of the Whidbey Bowmans Club and has always enjoyed taking his children to the tournaments. She tagged along to a few of the tournaments and decided to try it, he said. Now she really likes beating all the adults, especially her dad.Since she started, Anderson has made quite an impact on the archery world. Winners Choice Custom Bow Strings and Sims Vibration Laboratories, both national archery equipment producers, sponsor her. The best thing about having sponsors, she said, is the equipment they give her.With my new bow, Ive won all of the tournaments Ive been in, Anderson said. She has received all sorts of free equipment, including a bow that has all the advanced perks that professionals use.Anderson also enjoys traveling to the different places the tournaments are held. So far, she has competed in Canada, other U.S. cities, and will travel to Las Vegas in February for the Indoor National Tournament. Next summer, Anderson will compete in a national competition in Missouri. Her parents are very proud of what she has accomplished in such a short amount of time. Not only does her dad take pride in his daughters talent, but also the young woman it is helping her become.Its not necessarily the winning that were proud of, but that she has so much fun doing it, he said. Im proudest of the way she handles it all. Its given her a broader horizon of what is out there. As for loftier goals, such as the Olympics, Anderson says she would love to give it a try when Im a lot better. Shes already looking ahead though: In September she will begin training with a Junior Olympics archery coach in Seattle once or twice a week.In all of the excitement over archery, Anderson seems to have kept a level head and her feet firmly planted on the ground. She is a straight-A student at Crescent Harbor Elementary, where social studies is her favorite subject because she likes learning about different places and cultures. Anderson also enjoys time spent with her friends and playing other sports. "