San Antonio, TX - The EC Lion Clay Target team traveled to San Antonio, TX for the 48th Annual ACUI Collegiate Clay Target Championships. They came away with their best finish in the history of the 4th year program. The Lions were in the very competitive Division III with 43 other college teams from across the country. 750+ College athletes made the annual trip to Texas, making it the largest shoot to date.
Mark Beardsley started off the week with a gold medal finish in the Bunker Trap Shootout and with the win came a $1,000 scholarship. His sister and team mate, Stephanie Beardsley won this event last year on the Ladies side. This event did not count toward team total but set the tone for the week.
The teams competed in multiple events spread out over several days. First up was the Five Stand competition in which the EC Lions placed 3rd. The Lions shot really strong in Sporting Clays and placed 2nd with Evan Milford placing 1st in Class A. International Skeet was the only discipline in which EC did not place in the top 3 and wound up 6th. International Trap was next for the Clay Target team and again they made their presence felt with a 3rd place finish.
Emmanuel College has been in the past known as a team that excels in American Skeet and they did not disappoint with a 3rd place finish. Jeremy Jackson, a past National Champion, shot a perfect 100 but fell just short of repeating in a 6 way shoot-off. The team had a strong finish on the last day with American Trap and finished 2nd, just a few targets out of 1st place.
With all shooting done and the scores tallied, the EC Lions walked away with the 3rd place trophy, many individual awards and a good deal of recognition from the National Collegiate shooting community. First Place went to Hillsdale College, second place was Schreiner University, 4th was George Mason University and 5th place was awarded to Colorado State University. The scores were very tight between 1st, 2nd and 3rd.
"The team really fought hard after a disappointing 6th place finish last year", said Coach Charles Cawthon. "We had all the pieces together but they just wouldn't fall in to place. This year we competed much better as a team. Everyone contributed and it was satisfying to see everyone shoot to their potential. The core of this team will return since we will only loose Senior Jeremy Jackson, who was our first recruit to the program. I'm very pleased with the outcome and excited about the future."