The Juneau Trap Team is hosting the fourth annual Southeast Fall Tournament this weekend at the Juneau Gun Club.
Close to 20 team members will be joined by dozens of others from around the state and region. According to trap team coach Mark Kappler, approximately 80 participants signed up this year, making it the largest gathering in its short history. It’s also the first year a team from out-of-state is attending: Washington state’s Woodland High School.
“If they have a good time and things work well, they’ll tell other teams, and I expect we’ll keep growing every year,” Kappler said.
Kappler has brought several teams to the junior clay target national championships. When it comes to forming competitive target shooters, there’s no substitute for tournament experience, Kappler said, and getting to do it at home is the icing on the cake.
“It’s really nice to have a local tournament and host it yourself,” Kappler said. “For the youth shooter, it’s good to shoot in a tournament environment. It’s something different: the atmosphere is different, your thinking is different. So it’s something you have to get used to.”
The single trap competition is slated for 9 a.m. Saturday with double trap following at 1 p.m. On Sunday, wobbles kicks off at 9 a.m. followed by sporting clays at 1 p.m. The events vary where the clay targets are “thrown” from and where the shooter is positioned in relation to the throwing device.
Led by then-Thunder Mountain High School senior John Morris, Juneau tied Petersburg with 277 points at last year’s tournament. Morris, who now shoots at Arizona State University, came in the top-three in trap, wobbles and doubles. Nolan Ramseth and Brice Norton will be two of Juneau’s six varsity shooters this year. Competing in the junior division last year, Ramseth and Norton each won individual events.
The team also includes nine shooters in the novice and intermediate divisions. The novice division is reserved for fifth grade and below, while the intermediate division includes grades six, seven and eight. Hudson Hunt is the team’s lone novice shooter, while Trygve Hermann, Finley Sullivan, Cayden Brenner, Jager Hunt, Iosefa Allen, Kiana Allen, Mackenzie Lam and Jack Schwarting are all intermediate shooters.
Hermann was a state champion at the AlaskaYESS State Championships in June.
The Juneau Gun Club is located at 0.5 Mile Montana Creek Road across the street from the Juneau Community Gardens. There will be shelters set up for those watching the event. Food and concessions sales will also be available.