Top young trapshooters compete in Alabama

Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 10:21 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 3, 2022 at 6:23 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - Some of the best young shooters in Alabama are in Mathews this week for a state competition. While it may not be a mainstream sport, these young men and ladies have a good eye and a ton of talent.

“Trapshooting is a shotgun sport,” said Todd Richardson, the AIM Youth Shooting Organizer. “There are three disciplines in trap. There’s doubles, singles and handicaps.”

Some of the best top guns between the ages of 10-22 are competing in the Alabama Trap Championship at the Dixie Trap Club in Mathews.

“They are considered athletes,” said Richardson. “They do train. They do have coaches. They have set schedules to shoot.”

Some of the best young marksmen in the state are taking aim in the Alabama State Trapshooting...
Some of the best young marksmen in the state are taking aim in the Alabama State Trapshooting competition.(WSFA 12 News)

Joshua Murray is in his fourth year of competitive shooting.

“One of the biggest things I enjoy is the people you meet at events,” said Murray, a soon to be senior at Cullman High School. “Everyone is willing to help you. It’s like a camping event.”

Murray is on the Cullman High School Shooting Team, and he has plenty of teammates. After doing archery for years, this is Katie Skinner’s first shooting competition.

“It’s just fun,” said Skinner, soon be Cullman High School junior. “You get to shoot at flying targets which is very different from archery.”

The group putting on the event is AIM, which stands for Academics, Integrity, and Marksmanship. Hitting the targets is key, but there’s something even more important.

“It’s all about safety,” said Richardson. “That is the number one priority.”

It’s not just the boys out here competing.

“The majority are guys. I don’t really see a difference,” said Skinner. “They all treat you the same, and you just have a lot of fun.”

So what makes a good shooter?

“A lot of it, probably 90-95%, is your mental approach,” said Murray. “You have to go out there and trust in your abilities that you know that you have, and what you’ve practiced and worked on all season long.”

Some of the best young marksmen in the state are taking aim in the Alabama State Trapshooting...
Some of the best young marksmen in the state are taking aim in the Alabama State Trapshooting competition.(WSFA 12 News)

The things these kids are learning go far beyond the range.

“It teaches you a lot of good quality skills,” said Skinner. “You need to have discipline, patience. You have to be on time for practice. You have to put in your hard work and effort, and you have to juggle it with school too.”

Over the weekend the best young shooters will have a chance to take on the adults at the Dixie Trap Club. You do have to be a member of the Amateur Trapshooting Association to attend.

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