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November 9, 2017 • Sports
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Versailles American Legion Junior Shooting Team, continues to hit their mark

Gary Franklin

In only their third year competing in the Southern Indiana Air Rifle Match competition, the Versailles American Legion, Leora Weare Post #173 Team posted another positive performance at the Friendship NMLRA Shooting facility, in Friendship, on Saturday, Oct. 28. The event ran from approximately 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Three visiting teams gathered to compete against the hometown Versailles American Legion Team, coached by Jerry Hewitt, Roger Kavanaugh, Steve Scoggins and Candy Tuller.

Richard BlockNathan MayMaggie HoltSUBMITTED PHOTOS
Pictured above from left, having finished their practice set up for the prone position set are three Versailles shooters: Richard Block, Nathan May and Maggie Holt. The three tallied three of the top six scores for the day, (Block 234 with two Bullseyes, May 226 with three Bulleyes and Holt 227 with three Bullseyes. Most notably, the Versailles team proudly earned seven of the Top 10 scores for the day's shooting event: 1. Jamie Thomas, 2. Richard Block, 5. Maggie Holt, 6. Nathan May, 7. Courtney Grable, 8. Riley May and 10. Kaitlyn Schwanholt.

Team competition included: (SIRPC), So. Indiana Rifle & Pistol Club of Georgetown, coached by James (Mike) Smith & Jamie McKown. Southern Ind. Sharpshooters of Jasper coached by Brad Hartwick and Hancock County, Greenfield coached by George Lacey.

According to Department of Indiana, American Legion Junior Shooting Sports Chairman, Ida May Jewell, the American Legion has sponsored a national Junior Shooting Sports program for 27 years. Annually there are nearly 2,000 young athletes who participate in the postal match beginning in November. From 2 postal rounds, the 30 top scoring participants are selected for the National Finals. Of these, 15 participants are Sporter Shooters and 15 are Precision. These winners are then invited, all expenses paid, to the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado for 5 days. The National Final consists of four, 3x20 matches, conducted over two days, with a final round fired by the top eight contestants in each of the two categories. The final is 10 shots standing. The top shooter in each category will receive a $5,000 scholarship.

For nearly 20 years, the American Legion Department of Indiana has conducted a State Junior Shooting Sports Tournament. Beginning with last year’s tournament, the top shooter in that tournament receives the Ida Jewell Scholarship in the amount of $1,000. All participants in the Junior Shooting Sports tournaments are sponsored by their local American Legion Posts. The department sponsors a training session annually to certify coaches for the sport.

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