By Star Stone
The Clay Crushers opened their 2014 Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP) trap season on March 15 by joining 15 teams and 250 shooters at the Big Springs Shooting Complex in Christiana, TN.
Head Coach Fred Petersen fielded three varsity squads, one junior varsity squad (JV) and three intermediate advanced (IA) squads. The intermediate entry (IE) and the rookie squads did not compete in this event.
The Clay Crushers varsity red finished third with a score of 471x500 just three targets behind top finisher Middle Tennessee Christian School of Murfreesboro with a 474.
Second place Richland High School of Giles County posted a 472.
Shooting for the Clay Crushers varsity red was Meghan Server, Andrew Smith, Andy Carey, Cody Chattin and Nathan Wattenbarger.
The Clay Crushers varsity White finished ninth out of 24 varsity squads with a score of 443. Members of this squad include Allyson Petersen, Madeline Kittrell, Derek Rose, Luke Kemmer and Megan Burgess.
Varsity blue posted a 359 shooting with a partial squad composed of Casey Clark, Nathan Hembree, Logan Adams and Cody McAnnally.
Richland High School claimed top spot for the JV division with a score of 459x500 with Lawrence County High following at 396.
The Clay Crushers were tied with Marshall County for third position with both squads posting a 391. The tie-breaker was determined by reviewing the last 25 posted scores by the two squads.
Marshall County eased past the Clay Crushers to claim third place.
Clay Crushers JV squad members were Ty Stone, Cody Hyder, Spencer Wooten, Aden Mathis and John Weismuller.
Twelve teams competed in the IA division with the Clay Crushers IA #1 finishing third with a score of 460x500.
Middle Tennessee Christian School took first place with a 466, followed by Hoodlum Alley of Shelbyville finishing second with a 465.
Shooting on the Clay Crushers IA #1 was Jordan Burgess, Cooper Wyatt, Ryley Phillips, Corbin Moore and Clint Kemmer.
Clay Crushers IA #3 posted a 435, finishing in sixth place with the squad composed of Taylor Webb, Hunter Webb, Dylan Mowdy, Robbie Parks and Justin Reed. Clay Crushers IA #2 finished ninth with a score of 415. Squad members included Steven Douglas, Gabe Whittenburg, Gavin Threet, David Weismuller, and Darren Kittrell.
Coach Fred Petersen feels the athletes have improved in several areas as compared to this time last year.
“Their focus, form, stance, and numbers have all improved. They are just performing at a higher level,” he said. "I expect good things this year from the team and feels they will again be competitive at the state and national levels.
The Clay Crushers' next competition will be the third annual Doug Server Shoot on the Mountain April 5 at the Sportsman Club on Shorty Barns Rd. in Crossville.