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Local youth compete at state trap league tournament

Shooters at the varsity competition in Alexandria Sunday are (from left) Zach Giese, Bo Olson, Reed Kannegiesser, Mike Rausch, and Mitch DeBuhr with their coach, Nick Milbrandt.

The Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta clay target league just wrapped up its first season by competing in the 2013 State Tournament this past weekend in Alexandria.

There are 117 teams in the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League. With 1,869 student athletes participating in the state tournament, the Alexandria Shooting Park, Minnesota’s largest shooting facility, was a busy place for the three-day event.

Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta shooters participated in all three competition classifications at the tournament, Novice, Junior Varsity, and Varsity.

At the varsity competition Sunday, five Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta shooters took aim in steady rain. Mitch DeBuhr and Mike Rausch both powdered 90 of 100 clay targets. Bo Olson busted 81. Reed Kannegiesser hit 75 and Zach Giese shot 72.

At the end of the day, six shooters with a 98 score tied to compete in a sudden victory shootoff. Brendan McCabe of Hastings High School won the shootoff to become the 2013 State Tournament Overall High Gun Champion.

Second place went to Quinn Rohweder – Hopkins High School; taking third place was Jona Friesen – Detroit Lakes High School; and tying for fourth place were Jake Myers – Hopkins High School, Tommy Mavencamp – St. Michael-Albertville High School, and Jacob Oberloh – Worthington High School.

Emma Olson of St. Michael-Albertville High School was the Varsity High Gun Female, followed by Ellen Peterson of Simley High School in second and Jenna Jahnke, also of Stillwater High School, in third.

St. Michael-Albertville High School took first place as a team. Hastings High School came in second and Hopkins High School finished third.

At Saturday’s Junior Varsity competition, the Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta team finished in 11th place of 73 teams with a combined score of 427. Eric Larson and Philip Messner led the team with 92s. Luis D’Antonio (Jose Sperr) shot an 87, Fritz Spohr hit 85, and Matt Munsterman had a 71.

The Novice shooters competed Friday. Brittany Cardwell hit 52, Matt Athey shot 51, Carl Ritzschke hit 51, and Delia Sanasack shot 36 of 75 birds.

The league has been in existence for 10 years and this year the league had more than 3,400 participants in the state. This past winter, the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) approved an official partnership with the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League (MSHSCTL). Starting in June of 2014, trapshooting will be recognized as a sport like all other high school sports. Minnesota will be the first state high school athletic association in the nation to host a sanctioned high school trapshooting state tournament.