The Hillsdale College Shotgun Sports Team travelled to San Antonio, TX to compete in the ACUI Clay Target National Championship from March 26th through 30th. Although the team ultimately fell short of their goal of a sixth consecutive division 3 title, they did not come home empty handed.
The team’s efforts landed them in third place High Overall with a score of 2335, missing out on second by just three targets and first by 18. Although a total of 50 teams with 10 or less athletes competed in division 3, only 26 qualified for the HOA award. The team also took first place in International Skeet (score 270/300) and second place in Sporting Clays (421/500).
“It was a little disappointing not being able to repeat again,” Jordan Hintz, assistant coach and past team member said, “but we knew that this year would be a bit of a step back. Every tournament there have been more teams with stronger competitors and we just couldn’t keep up this time. We have a very young and inexperienced team compared to the past few years and, all things considered, I’m very proud with how everyone performed.”
“Although we were unable to reach our goal this year, I was glad to watch our new members of the team improve in every event. I can say with absolute certainty the team will be back next year better than ever to continue a tradition of winning.” said senior Matt Grunzweig
The team’s top four competitors were Grunzweig (score 540/600), junior Lucas Pieraccini (540), freshman Anthony LaMacchia (534), and senior Emanuel Boyer (532). All placed in the top 75 out of nearly 900 shooters. Boyer was the only Hillsdale shooter to put up a score high enough to count in all six disciplines while Grunzweig, Pieraccini, and LaMacchia all had five top scores. Sophomore, but first year team member, Barrett Moore was the biggest surprise of the week, putting up three scores including an impressive 97/100 in American Skeet.
Boyer, who will begin attending medical school this summer, mentioned, “I am grateful to Hillsdale College for giving me the opportunity to further my education and continue competing in the sport that I love.”
“I’m incredibly proud of everyone and I’ve loved being a part of this team. I’m definitely going to miss it,” Klug added.