Big shots at State
A day that began before sunup with loading rifles, muskets, ammo and other supplies into a trailer for a 300-mile journey ended 14 hours later with Graham County 4-H Shooting Sports members being recognized as among the best marksmen in the state.
“The boys did great!! Four boys brought home 10 state titles!” remarked Lisa Keener, who’s son Drey was one of the big shots at the State Tournament in Ellerbe. He placed second in Junior Division shotgun.
“It felt good to represent Robbinsville High School. Between football and shooting sports, I didn’t have much time for shooting sports, but it felt good to get second,” Drey said.
Garrett Holder won four medals in the Senior Division, placing in the top three in archery (individual and overall, and shotgun (individual and overall). Garrett’s medals included a first in Senior Division archery match and third in Senior Division shotgun.
Junior BJ Collins also had four top-three performances, in Junior Division archery, muzzleloading, rifle, and shotgun.
Zeke Odom earned a third-place medal in Junior Division recurve archery.
The three senior members of the team – Holder, Collins and Dylan Hagen – have been invited to try out for the shooting team North Carolina will send to the national meet.
Hagen placed fourth in shotgun.
“This was the first year on the Senior Division for Garrett Holder, Justin Lynn and Caleb Lail, so we are very pleased to have two of them invited to national try-outs. That’s an accomplishment!” NC Cooperative Extension Service, Graham County Center Administrative Assistant Amy Holder remarked. “The Senior Division is definitely more competitive, and they handled it well!”
Volunteer Coach Ransom Cornett’s entire 15-member team handled the State competition well. “Most of our kids placed in the top 20 in the state for every discipline they competed in,” Lisa Keener said.
Most notably, Graham County shooters pretty much owned the Junior Division shotgun event, posting four of the top five scores.
Tryouts for the team North Carolina will send to the Nationals will be Oct. 21. Those selected will practice in Ellerbe one weekend a month. The national competition will be in June, in Nebraska.