SIC Shotgun Team Wins Four SCTP National Team Championships
Bruce Hering, coach of Southeastern Illinois College’s nationally ranked shotgun team, has been busy this summer. At the Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP) National Championships held July 14-19 in Sparta, Illinois, Hering’s team added four national collegiate team championships and four national individual titles to the school’s trophy case.
When the smoke cleared after six days of shooting, the SIC men had garnered gold in American Skeet, Doubles Skeet, Doubles Trap, and Handicap Trap. In individual competition, SIC’s Quinton Smith of Minford, Ohio won the Doubles Skeet title with James Barnard of Ballwin, Mo. taking second place. Tony Fortino of Kankakee, Illinois, won titles in Doubles Trap and Handicap Trap, and Jessica Farthing of Pinckneyville, Illinois, won the ladies title in Doubles Trap.
Southeastern competed against such four-year schools as University of Iowa, University of Tennessee, Jacksonville University, Bethel University, Eastern Kentucky University, and Lindenwood University.
“More than 2500 young shooters, along with thousands of coaches, family members, and supporters, descended upon the World Shooting and Recreational Complex in Sparta for the largest youth shooting event ever held, the SCTP National Championships,” said Sherry Kerr, media contact for the Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation, which sponsors the annual event.
The event is a major venue for shotgun teams from high schools and colleges across the nation. Competitors shot 715,000 targets, a 35 percent increase over last year. Shooters from 175 SCTP teams came from 26 states.
“Overall. I feel like Southeastern performed quite well,” said Hering. “We could have had a few more birds on sporting clays and trap, but when you look at everything else the team did, it was outstanding.”
“Winning the new event of Doubles Skeet with Quinton shooting a perfect score of 100 straight and James backing that up with a 99 and Alex Aguilar (McAllen, Texas) putting up a 96 was just great, and then Quinton and James and Preston Crandell (Paris, Illinois)won the regular skeet event, wow!” said an exuberant Hering. “We had three students, Jessica, Alex, and Preston, shoot a 192 in skeet, and the tie for the placement was broken by a long run.”
Hering added that his trap squads were outstanding in doubles and handicap, winning both events, and that Farthing performed extremely well throughout the event, finishing as tournament runner-up in Ladies HOA (High Overall Average), which according to Hering is “no small accomplishment.”
As a team, SIC also finished as HOA National Runner-up in 200 Target American Skeet, 200 Target Sporting Clays, and 200 Target 16 Yard Trap.
“As this is rather a transition year for the team, I am quite pleased with the team’s performance,” Hering emphasized. “This group of shooters is now the foundation for our team going forward.”
College president Dr. Jonah Rice had high praise for Coach Hering and his team. “SIC has a long-standing tradition of national caliber sport shooting champions, and this most recent set of victories demonstrates that we continue that distinctive tradition. We are so proud of the team and coach for yet another series of championships.”
Rounding out the list of competitors for SIC were Justin Schwankhaus of Okawville, Illinois; Ben Wallace of St. Clair Shores, Michigan; and Stephanie Beardsley of Glen Rock, Pennsylvania.
Complete Individual Scoring Results
Jessica Farthing – Collegiate Ladies Sporting Clays 2nd Place, Collegiate Ladies American Skeet 2nd Place, Collegiate Ladies Doubles Trap 1st Place, Collegiate Ladies HOA 2nd Place
Stephanie Beardsley – Collegiate Ladies American Trap 3rd Place
Tony Fortino – Collegiate Men Doubles Trap 1st Place, Collegiate Men Handicap Trap 1st Place
Quinton Smith – Collegiate Men Doubles Skeet 1st Place, Collegiate Men American Skeet 2nd Place
James Barnard – Collegiate Men Doubles Skeet 2nd Place, Collegiate Men American Skeet 3rd Place
Justin Schwankhaus – Collegiate Men Handicap Trap 2nd Place, Collegiate Men Doubles Trap 3rd Place
Alex Aguilar – Collegiate Men Doubles Skeet 3rd Place
Preston Crandell – Collegiate Men Handicap Trap 3rd Place