ADVANCED JUNIOR RIFLE
Happy New Year to all the members at Reading Rifle. We would like to thank you all for all your support during this year. We would like to recap some of the top events we have been involved in this summer of 2022 and accomplishments so far for 2023.
We started the summer with Reading Hosting a CMP Small-bore camp for 4 days. The juniors and coaches who attended had a great time and learned a lot in a short period of time. We had juniors come all the way from Alaska to attend this camp. The final day of the camp all participants participated in a camp championship. They shot a 3 x 20 at 50 yards. After all the targets were scored, Reading’s own Olivia Reilly took 2nd place and the silver medal. The CMP is excited to host again next year and to also host other clinics and matches that will be open to all, not just for juniors.
The day after the clinic ended the advanced juniors Bill and I hopped in our cars and headed off to Camp Perry Ohio for The National Air Rifle and Small-bore Matches. The juniors did an amazing job in both air rifle and small-bore. Air rifle was very challenging with the best shooters from all around the country attending this 4 day match. The turnout was amazing, I have not seen this many juniors and teams since before Covid hit.
Team members Andrew Duross, Audrey Martin, Henry McCurry and Olivia Reilly performed at the top of their game and had many personal bests. Unfortunately this was going to be the last match as a junior s for all members except for Olivia. Andrew would be moving on as a member of the Akron Rifle Team, Audrey will be attending Georgetown University and Henry is off to Trinity University in CT. As the last shots were fired emotions ran high, we hated to see them move on, but we know that they will do amazing things with the great foundation they developed from their shooting career.
The same four left the indoor air conditioning and moved out doors to the sun, bugs, heat, wind and living under a tent for the next phase of small-bore 3 position competitions. As the juniors came out they were followed by their parents. We had a front tent for the kids and coaches and the back tent was for the parents. They had their laptops and phones in hand, work doesnt stop even on the line. Both individually and team the kids did an amazing job in not so easy conditions. Andrew Duross placed 5th overall and placed 6th on both the open and junior shoot offs. The 4 person team placed 1st club team and received a plaque and medals. Great job wasdone by all, especially Coach Bill Duross who coached the team to the win.
After a few weeks off ( and I mean a few) and the summer over we were back at the range. Practice resumed both indoors for air rifle and outdoors for smallbore. Our M1 Garand raffle resumed and with the help of the club members, team members and their families we were able to sell all of our raffle tickets. The lucky winner was Buddy Fanjoy, who received a very nice Christmas gift. Watch out, we will be starting up another raffle soon.
The funds went toward the purchase of electronic lifts for our junior electronic targets. The targets were paid for 100% by the junior team through grant writing and fundraising. No funds came from the club to purchase these targets. Future raffles will help us pay off the remainder of the loans we took out along with the grants. Purchased custom shooting suites and new rifles to start the year off with a great start. New Shooting Suits, rifles and electronic targets, we were ready to begin our 2022/2023 Season. Several juniors purchased custom shooting suites and new rifles to start the year off with a great start.
Our first match to open the new season was the “Bay State Games”. The events involved both air rifle and small-bore. Olivia Reilly took 1st place overall in air rifle and second in small-bore. Medals were also earned by team members Barbara , (Birdie) Forgues, Kaylyn Sethakosee, Phoebe Forgues, Aiden Stambulskiy and Neilan Fahey. We were happy to help the BayState Games celebrate their 40th anniversary promoting amateur athletes and their sports. The juniors went all indoors to train for “Winter Air” out at Camp Perry Ohio. After traveling over 11 hours 6 of our juniors along with their parents joined other competitors from across the country and of all levels. The juniors placed on the line next to other juniors, NCAA Collegiate athletes, Members of the Army Marksmanship Unit and competitors of the USA Olympic Team.
Our Juniors were amazing and accomplished personal bests way beyond their previous accomplishments. We were also able to see former Junior Andrew Duross work his magic on the line and make it to the finals and place in the top percentage. We love to see our former juniors show off what they have learned from us and make us proud. Once a junior, always a junior as far as we are concerned at Reading and always proud of them and their accomplishments.
Coming home I spent my Christmas Vacation putting together our NEW electronic lifts. Thank you to everyone who showed up and unloaded the truck and stayed and helped put the lifts together. We were trying to get them all set up to be able to use for our matches starting in 2023. After a few learning curves we were able to accomplish our goal and used them in the 2023 CMP State 3p Championship match. Team members Olivia Reilly took the gold and Barbara (Birdie) Forgues took the silver, Kaylyn Sethakosee took bronze for the women and team members Neilan Fahey took silver and Aiden Stambulshiy took the bronze medals in this match.
The Reading Rebels placed first Team and earned themselves an invite to the Regionals at Camp Perry April 23. The electronic lifts were amazing and saved us time. We unfortunately are not getting our workout moving them all from position to position, but we are not complaining!
Road Trip to Palmyra Pennsylvania
Our first road trip for the year was to Palmyra Pennsylvania for their yearly Air/Small-bore Invitational. The match runs every weekend for a month. Teams from all over come and compete. Juniors, adults, NCAA, non collegiate make the mix of competitors who come to compete. Match director Erin Gestle and his wife Shelly run a great match. Team members Olivia Reilly, Birdie Forgues, Phoebe Forgues, Aiden Stambulskiy and Neilan Fahey along with their support team traveled the 6.5 hours (beats 10.5 to Ohio). We began the day with small-bore, but even with 3 personal bests we were only able to pull off 4th place U21. Positive note we were only 5 points out of 3rd.
Air rifle was another matter. The team performed very well and several personal bests. They finished in second place U21. Watch out , next year we are going for the gold!
Back at home we settled in to train hard for the upcoming Junior Olympics for Air and Small-bore that Reading will be hosting. The first event was the Junior Olympics for Air Rifle. The qualifiers of this match will be invited to attend the championship match that will be held at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO. We had a great turnout with 4 full relays of competitors. Beautiful rifles and custom suits and talented young men and women made this event an honor to host. After all the shooting was complete and the results were in, Reading’s juniors Olivia Reilly took the silver medal for the women with a 581.28 and Barbara (Birdie) Forgues took the silver with a 576.27. Reading men performed well with Neilan Fahey taking the Gold with a 579.27 and Aiden Stambulskiy taking the bronze with a 555.19.
Small-bore Junior Olympics were the following weekend with not much time for practice, but the juniors were ready and eager. 3 full relays of talented young men and women all wanting that invite to the Championship and a chance to compete at the Olympic Training Center. To compete shoulder to shoulder with the best of the best. Competition was tough and scores tight, but after the final shot was sent the results were in. Reading’s Olivia Reilly took the Bronze medal for the women with less than 10 points separating 1,2,3 places. The men’s event was like a mirror image of the air rifle match. Neilan Fahey with the Gold and Aiden Stambulskiy with the Bronze. We were very proud of all our juniors in both events not for just being great shooters but fine men and women that we are very proud to coach.
Super Bowl Challenge
The advanced juniors sent out a challenge to the adult small-bore team members. The challenge was the juniors would shoot electronic targets and iron sights. The adults would shoot paper targets but could use scopes. They would shoot 4 targets, two in prone and 2 in offhand. These would be scored in 4 quarters. The junior chose to be the Chiefs and the Adults were going to be the Eagles. After the first half and brownies served at half time the juniors were just slightly ahead of the adults. But unfortunately the next two targets were a little challenging for the adults and the juniors increased their lead to win the Superbowl Rifle Event. Goodie bags were given to all participants. The scoreboard is still hanging in the clubhouse if you wish to see the actual scores. Thank you to all that participated, it was a lot of fun and look forward to a rematch.
Garand Man front of the CMP Building, Camp Perry Ohio
2022 we made a slight change to the junior High-power program. Instead of waiting until the “Spring” to start practice. We started the juniors who were interested in seeing what high-power was all about and had them start shooting on Sundays as part of the indoor / outdoor matches. The last relay of the day on Sunday mornings was dedicated to the junior high-power shooters. Coaches stood behind the junior shooters while they shot out of the building windows at targets 200 yards away. We were able to correct positions, change equipment and make major improvements to their positions way before spring training was to begin and we moved outside on the grass to train.
Training begins at the beginning of May on Friday afternoons from 3pm to 6pm. Matches are almost every weekend from March to July, giving juniors the opportunity to train and improve with each match. They also learn how to interact with other juniors and adults while competing and learning. We understand that not everyone can make each match, but once a junior begins we see a great many of them and several of their parents who want to come and shoot the matches each weekend. The season started out great for Junior Jake D’Eon who received 8 leg points toward his distinguished badge. Jake edged out his dad Tom who took the 6 point leg of the match. Jack Marshall also displayed his talents by taking 3rd place overall and 1st junior at the Mass State Championship. I love it when the adults ask me to leave the juniors home so they have a chance to win. July came quickly and so did Camp Perry and the National Matches.
We were able to take out 2 junior teams last year, down one from the previous year. Juniors were joined by one parent who also shot at the National Matches and helped not only with the Junior Matches, but with the adult team matches also. Teams consisted of Jack Marshall and Jake D’eon along with coaches Charlie Trickett and Maureen Trickett with puller Tom D’eon. Nate Ware and Anthony Holubiak along with coaches Mike Schunemann and Tom Connolly and puller Stephen Houlech made up our second team. Both teams did extremely well and we were very proud of their performances. Jack and Jake took 8th place overall against some very stiff competition. Nate and Anth only came in 2nd overall in the at large category.
Individually Junior Jack Marshall represented Reading Rifle very well placing 8th overall in the individual category of the team match. He also earned another 10 points toward his distinguished badge, leaving him just shy of legging out. No worries, he did not get the badge at Perry, but did earn himself a placement on the Deneke Trophy. The Deneke Trophy winners are the top 6 junior shooters of the National matches and is quite an honor to be a part of. Jack was able to accomplish his distinguished badge not at Perry, but came home and went to the Eastern games in Vermont and not only earned his final points but placed 1st in the non-distinguished category with a 490. Unfortunately for us Jack also not only legged out but aged out for this coming season to be a junior. We will miss him and Anthony who also aged out, but they now will take on the adults as adults. We wish them bot much luck, but we know they will not need any.
If you know anyone (Junior male or female ages 14 to 19 with at least one year of shooting experience with a junior program) who may be interested in being part of the junior high-power rifle team, please have them send an email to Coach Maureen Trickett at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to send questions about the program also.
If a junior is interested, please send the following information:
Junior full Name, Age and date of birth, junior program or shooting experience.
Do they have any equipment, ifso what do they have, jacket, stool, rifle ?
Also if they will be available to practice on Friday afternoons and compete on the weekends