Local Schools Compete In Trap-Shooting Competition
Justin Ekstrom | Jun 19, 2018 AT 7:28 pm
(KNSI) - Just to gauge how big the Minnesota State High School League Trap Shooting League has become, just know that it is now the largest clay target shooting competition in the world.
Over 8,000 athletes from 325 schools participated in the Trap Shooting Championships in Alexandria, Minnesota.
The competition spanned over nine days, starting on Monday, June 11th and ending on Tuesday the 19th.
A few of the St. Cloud area schools not only participated but posted great scores as their number of participants continues to grow.
Class 1A Monday, June 11th
All activities were suspended due to weather; St. Cloud Apollo was supposed to compete (team pictured above; picture compliments of Pam Funk).
Coach Mary Barron-Traut said that the kids were pretty bummed to travel to Alexandria without being able to compete.
The league directors decided to take the scores from weeks 4 and 5 to decide which shooters would earn medals.
Class 2A Tuesday, June 12th
Milaca finished 9th with a varsity score of 459; pretty good score considering they only have five total varsity shooters (Pictured above).
St. Cloud Cathedral finished 14th with a varsity score of 451 points.
Cathedral head coach, Joe Opitz has been instrumental in the growth of local teams; he currently is attempting to convince St. Cloud Tech to have a team next year.
Class 3A Wednesday, June 13th
No schools from the local area competed today but Long Prairie Grey Eagle finished 17th with 459 points and a high-gun score of 95 from Nathan Ruda.
Junior Varsity shooter, Isaac Cebulla took home gold with a 94.
Sauk Centre finished 28th on the day with a score of 446 points; their top shooter was Alexander Vogel with a score of 93.
Melrose did not have enough varsity shooters to garner a score but sophomore, Sara Hoppe (pictured above), became the team’s first to earn a patch for shooting 25 of 25 and finished fifth among JV females.
Class 4A Thursday, June 14th
Kimball finished 9th with a score of 448 points; Jack Knaus shot a 96 to lead the team.
Little Falls (pictured above) had a tough day battling the wind and ended 21st on the day with a score of 432 points; Logan Schuett was top scorer with a 91.
Class 5A Friday, June 15th
Sauk Rapids-Rice had a nice day but their 467 points were only good enough for 11th on the day.
Tyler St. Onge scored a 97 to lead the Storm; sophomore, Justin Scheeler was right behind him with a 96.
According to head coach, Paul Fierich, they saw some of their best scores to date.
Class 6A and 7A, June 16th and 17th
No local schools competed over the weekend but defending Minnesota State Champ, St. Michael Albertville scored a 492 to lead all varsity team scores in the entire competition.
Class 8A Monday, June 18th
Sartell had the highest score out of all the local schools with a 468; good enough for eight-best on the day.
Brian Avery had the top score for the Sabres with a 96 and Autumn Dingman added a 93 to take fourth in the female varsity division.
Class 9A Tuesday, June 19th
Albany and Foley both scored a 464 with Foley edging them out in the standings by getting a top score of 97 from Connor Olson.
Albany’s top scorer was Eric Van Heel (pictured above, center) with a 95 after shooting a perfect 50 out of 50 in his first round.
Albany did take home the first-place trophy in junior varsity and third in the novice category.
Rocori finished 11th on the day with a score of 460; Ethan Mills was top scorer with a 94 to lead the Spartans.
Only the top 40 teams overall go to state, regardless of class; STMA won the competition with a 492 and Sartell was the best of the local schools with a 468.
The competition ended without any of the local schools making it to state as only the top 40, regardless of class, become entrants.
The local teams did very well in the junior varsity and novice categories; the teams could compete for a state berth in the near future.