LCPF Press Release
Lyon County Pheasants Forever (LCPF) and the Redwood River Sportsman’s Club (RRSC) will be hosting the first of four Young Guns Days on Sunday, July 26 from 1 to 4 pm. LCPF will cover the costs of all ammunition for 12 and 20 gauge shotguns, and provide ammo for the .22 rifles and .177 air rifles available for young shooters to try out on the range. The chapter will also cover the costs of clay targets if shooters want to try trap or skeet shooting at the RRSC facility.
The two organizations will host three shooting sports events throughout the season from 1 to 4 pm on the following Sundays: July 26, Aug. 30 and Oct. 4. The Young Guns experience will also be part of the annual LCPF Mentor Hunt scheduled for Oct. 17, where participants can try out target and trap shooting at the RRSC facility, located 8 miles southeast of Marshall, Minn. Young shooters are encouraged to bring their own firearms, if they have them, or they will be able to use those contained in the Young Guns package which was awarded to LCPF in 2012 by Pheasants Forever’s Shooting Sports Initiative. Participants can use Stoeger Air Rifles, Ruger .22 rifles and TriStar Viper 20 gauge shotguns from the Young Guns package.
“We’re happy to offer the Young Guns events again this year, as they are a great way to introduce young people to shooting sports and get kids actively involved in the outdoors,” said Nick Simonson, LCPF President, "we hope to use the Oct. 4 date as a rifle and slug gun sight in day for those youth hunting deer this year, to teach the importance of a well-sighted gun in executing a clean, humane shot while hunting big game," he concluded.
MHS CTL Press Release
The Marshall High School Clay Target League team (MHS CTL) put an exclamation point on its 2015 season by sending 43 participants to the Minnesota High School Clay Target League (MNHSCTL) Class 4A State Championship in Alexandria, Minn. on Sun. June 14. There the team’s Junior Varsity squad captured first place with an exciting final round by its last five shooters and the MHS CTL Novice squad took second in its division with scores above and beyond their season averages.
The morning started with a great deal of excitement from the team’s captains as Rusty Swanson, a Senior, fired the team up by posting a 25 in his second round, marking the team’s first perfect round of the year. Meanwhile, Junior Captain Malachi Breczinski lead the team’s morning scoring with rounds of 22 and 24 for a team-leading 46 along with Junior Captain Alex DeBaere who helmed the team’s Varsity squad.
The story of the morning belonged to the Novice shooters, as seventh graders Nicholas Kayser, Tristan Zinnel and eighth grader Derrick VanOverbeke posted totals of 41, 42 and 42 respectively with Zinnel leading the way with an squad-high round of 22 to cap off the morning’s shoot. Kayser averaged 13.5 and Zinnel 13.7 during the season, while VanOverbeke climbed the team rankings in the back half of the season raising his league average to 14.5.
“Here it is again, the impressive trend we’ve seen week after week this year of our young shooters learning, processing and applying everything they’ve been taught,” said Coach Nick Simonson, “I had a good feeling about our Novice squad from the get go - they were peaking and ready for this event,” he concluded.
Impressive as well were the numbers posted by the team’s Junior Varsity squad in the early morning. Led by Breczinski’s 46, Sophomore Ryan Landmark and Freshman Zachary Fischer posted rounds of 22 and 23 for totals of 45, followed by Junior Kyle Hanson’s pair of 22s for a 44 total and Freshman Owen Banks’ total of 43 to round out the morning’s top five for the JV squad.
The Varsity squad of eight found themselves up against stiff challenges and highly-experienced teams from throughout the conference. DeBaere and Brandon VanOverbeke posted totals of 46 to lead the morning shoot, with Freshman Wyatt Martin and Sophomore Ryan VanMoer adding totals of 45. DeBaere would be the next to post perfection and reinvigorate the team for the afternoon shoots.
The Junior Captain strung together 24 straight before coming to his final shot. With a confident shoulder of his 12-gauge, he took aim at the straight-away floater and turned it into powder before cracking a smile and nodding to the rest of the line of shooters along Trap House 8A as applause showered in from the 75 parents and spectators who turned out to watch the team shoot. Along with a round of 23, DeBaere led the Varsity squad and all MHS CTL shooters with a total of 94. Riley Swanson and Kaiden VanOverbeke added final rounds of 24 to the squad’s afternoon shoots. The Varsity squad finished 18th overall, with DeBaere finishing tied for 31st overall in the Varsity High Gun out of 328 competitors. The top five shooters for MHS CTL’s Varsity squad were:
Athlete R1 R2 R3 R4 Tot Avg
Alex DeBaere 22 24 25 23 94 23.5
Wyatt Martin 23 22 21 23 89 22.3
Riley Swanson 21 22 22 24 89 22.3
Brandon Vanoverbeke 23 23 21 22 89 22.3
Samuel Dieken 22 20 23 22 87 21.8
While the Varsity Squad was just getting started, the Novices were putting a cap on their season. Shooting 75 targets total, the final round saw Kayser once again post a 20 along with eighth grader Andrew Mulso and Freshman Michael DeVaan, followed by Freshman Eric Leach’s round of 19 and Zinnel and Senior Skylar Breczinski with 18 each. The team’s total of 293 earned them second place, five targets behind the first place Warroad High School team and three targets ahead of third place Stillwater High School. Kayser would finish tied for 7th, Zinnel tied for 12th, Derrick VanOverbeke tied for 15th and Mulso tied for 20th overall in Novice High Gun out of 226 shooters. The top five shooters for MHS CTL’s Novice squad were:
Athlete R1 R2 R3 Tot Avg
Nicholas Kayser 21 20 20 61 20.3
Tristan Zinnel 20 22 18 60 20.0
Derrick VanOverbeke 21 21 17 59 19.7
Andrew Mulso 20 18 20 58 19.3m
Michael DeVaan 20 15 20 55 18.3
The afternoon started off solid for the JV squad with Landmark posting rounds of 23 and 24 and Malachi Breczinski and Sophomore Dylan Dulas adding totals of 45. The constantly-updating online scoreboard showed MHS in second place going into the team’s final five JV shooters. As they prepared to take their stations and log the team’s last two rounds of the event, Coach Nick Simonson offered words of encouragement and optimism as the all-day heat gave way to some clouds and a light breeze.
On cue with the cool down, Hanson’s clutch pair of 24s along with Carson Douglas tacking up a 22 and 23 to go with his 24 from the morning and Nick Versaevel adding rounds of 20 and 23 fired the MHS JV squad to number one on the leaderboard. With two hours and a number of teams left to shoot, the group sweated out the rest of the tournament with eyes online. When all was said and done, the MHS JV squad nabbed first place with 448 points, topping Stillwater High School (447) and Warroad High School (443). Hanson and Landmark would finish tied for 3rd and Malachi Breczinski tied for 8th for JV High Gun out of 297 shooters. The top five JV squad participants for MHS CTL were:
Athlete R1 R2 R3 R4 Tot Avg
Kyle Hanson 22 22 24 24 92 23.0
Ryan Landmark 22 23 23 24 92 23.0
Malachi Breczinski 22 24 23 22 91 22.8
Zachary Fischer 22 23 18 24 87 21.8
Dylan Dulas 21 20 22 23 86 21.5
“I’m proud of these shooters, how hard they’ve practiced and how far they’ve come this season,” said Simonson, “putting two teams on the podium is evidence of our program’s progress, serving as a sign of good things to come and future competitiveness at all three levels,” he concluded.
MHS CTL Press Release
The Marshall High School Clay Target League Team (MHS CTL) closed out the fifth and final league week of the season with a great deal of excitement, which for some shooters came down to the very last target. Eighth grader Kaiden VanOverbeke became the eighth member of the team to qualify to shoot at the Varsity level at the State Championship in Alexandria, Minn. on June 14, by posting a near-perfect round of 24 followed up by a round of 21, to raise his average to 19.2 for the season. He also cemented his spot as MHS CTL’s most improved shooter, after nearly doubling his 2014 average of 10 targets.
“It was clutch shooting by Kaiden,” said Coach Nick Simonson, “he’s really come a long way this season and shown that he can connect when it counts.”
Drama unfolded at the top of the team rankings with Junior Brandon VanOverbeke posting two rounds of 23 for a total of 46 to overtake classmate Alex DeBaere for the team-best season average after DeBaere posted respectable rounds of 23 and 18 for a top five weekly finish. Brandon VanOverbeke finished the season with an average of 21.5 targets per round to DeBaere’s 21.2.
Freshman Dylan Dulas also posted two rounds of 23 to tie Brandon VanOverbeke atop the list of MHS CTL’s weekly best. Additionally, Freshman Zachary Fischer and Junior Sam Prorok also posted rounds of 24, to help them land in the top 15. Top shooters for league week five were:
First Last Rd1 Rd2 Tot
Brandon VanOverbeke 23 23 46
Dylan Dulas 23 23 46
KaidenVanOverbeke 24 21 45
Isaac Callens 21 22 43
Alex DeBaere 23 18 41
Zachary Fischer 17 24 41
Samuel Dieken 18 23 41
Wyatt Martin 23 18 41
Malachi Breczinski 20 21 41
Cameron VanOverbeke 22 19 41
Sam Prorok 16 24 40
John Callens 19 21 40
Rusty Swanson 22 18 40
Andrew Doyle 20 20 40
Derrick VanOverbeke 22 18 40
Up next for MHS CTL is the State Championship where the team will have eight Varsity division shooters who qualified by averaging 19 or more targets per round: Brandon VanOverbeke, Alex DeBaere, Samuel Dieken, Isaac Callens, Wyatt Martin, Ryan VanMoer, Kaiden VanOverbeke and Riley Swanson. Last year the team fielded just one Varsity shooter at the event. MHS CTL will also field a squad of 17 shooters at the Junior Varsity level and 20 Novice competitors at the State Championship. Varsity and JV participants will shoot 100 rounds each and Novice competitors will shoot 75 at the event. This year’s State Championship will span six days, starting June 11 and over 6,000 competitors from around Minnesota are expected to compete.
“The number of Varsity shooters we have is a good sign of the progress our program is making,” said Simonson, “but the even better indicator is the improvement in our overall team average,” he concluded, relating that number jumped from 12.7 in the first week of the season to 16.7 in Week 5.
MHS CTL, established in 2014, is funded through the financial support of Redwood River Sportsman’s Club, the Buffalo Ridge Gobblers chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation, Lyon County Pheasants Forever, the MidwayUSA Foundation, Pheasants Forever’s Youth Shooting Sports Initiative, and a number of private and business donors throughout the area. The team is helmed by 10 volunteer coaches and scorers from the Marshall area. This year, 235 schools and over 8,600 students in Minnesota are taking part in the Spring CTL season. For more information on the fastest growing high school sport in the state, visit www.mnclaytarget.com.