A 21-gun salute to the boys from the Cottage Grove Sportsmen's Club.
"All I do is shoot, don't play any other sports, don't really work, just shoot," Rick Lengele of Churchill High School deadpanned.
Life on the range is work and it has paid as the guys are locked and loaded to be the first team from Oregon to represent the state at the Scholastic Clay Target Program National Championships next week in Sparta, Illinois.
"The task at hand is to bring the championship back to Oregon." Cade Miller of Marist High School continued, "We want to represent Oregon well and do the best that we can out there and make sure everyone knows that Oregon is going to be a threat now."
Marist's Erik Gehrke agreed. "It's a self accomplishment and team accomplishment because we never thought we would have an actual shooting team."
It will be six scorching days of shooting at nationals from American Trap to Skeet and Sporting Clays.
11-year-old Wyatt Belden isn't looking forward to the Midwest heat. "Not the humid stuff out there I can tell you that."
Five of the guys on the Oregon SCTP team recently won the state shooting championships at Marist High School.
"A lot of people are really surprised that a private high school has a shooting team," Miller said.
It's all under the direction of head coach Jay Waldron who happens to know a thing or two about shooting. Waldron competed for Team USA during the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. Prior to the birth of any of the young men he coaches.
"He's more the elder-figure," Gehrke laughed, "He can tell us what to do and we're definitely going to listen to him."
"He knows everything so, well maybe not everything," Pat Laing of Marist added.
To view the full story with the Oregon SCTP team click on the video tab above or below.
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