Virginia’s SCTP program fielded two teams at the National Championship that was just completed in Sparta Illinois. Daniel Foster, Jacob Lawson, Chris Smith, Lauren Priddy, Randy Wright, Andrew Napier, and Jessica Mathews represented the Charity Hill Claybusters. Patrick Gorman, Lindsey Toler, Travis Wagner, and Rooster Watson represented the Old Forge 4-H Shotgun Team.
The Charity Hill squad composed of Daniel Foster, Jacob Lawson, and Chris Smith won the Sporting Clays competition in the Senior Varsity Division with an excellent score of 561 out of 600 targets, the second place squad was more than 30 targets behind. Daniel, Jacob and Chris are repeat National Champions having won the same event in last years competition. In addition, Daniel, Jacob, and Chris placed second in the High All Around event that combined sporting clays, skeet, and trap scores. Lauren Priddy has accepted a shooting scholarship at Southeastern Illinois State University and began a summer program there on July 1 but was able to participate in the National Championships. Randy Wright, Andrew Napier and Jessica Mathews participated in their first National Championship and each represented themselves well in each event they participated in.
While squads from the Old Forge team did not place in a championship event, they also represented themselves and the Commonwealth well. Rooster Watson posted one of the highest individual scores in the first day of sporting competition (92). Lindsey Toler shot her personal best scores in trap and sporting. Beretta sponsored a national Annie Oakley event on Saturday evening with 221 participants. Travis Wagner and Patrick Gorman both performed well in this event ending up in the final ten participants shooting from approximately 33 yards (could not go back any farther because they ran out of cord). Travis eventually won the event and was awarded a 391 Teknys from Beretta.
Complete scores from the National Championships should be posted on line at ssfonline.org later this week.
Much more importantly than their competitive accomplishments, each of these eleven youth shooters represented Virginia and the Virginia shooting sports community in an exemplary fashion. I have coached some of these kids for the last three years and have observed them all in various competitions over the last six years and I can assure you that there overall behavior is extraordinary. The next time that you see one of these kids, whether on a shooting field or just out somewhere, please take the time to congratulate and thank them for representing all of us in such a fine fashion, they certainly deserve it.
Consider getting involved in the youth shooting program through SCTP, the 4-H Shooting Education Program in your locality, or the AIM trapshooting program through ATA. I have been involved in both the 4-H program and SCTP for the last five years and can assure you that it will be one of the most rewarding experiences you will have in the shooting sports. If you are interested in starting a SCTP team in Virginia please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Coach, Old Forge 4-H Shotgun Team
SCTP Virginia State Advisor