SUAMICO — Students at Bay Port are targeting success in academics, athletics and now shooting, thanks to the Packerland Scholastic Clay Shooting Program.
The program provides students in the area with shooting sports education, opportunities and competition. This is the club's sixth year teaching all disciplines of the sport.
"We have experienced and inexperienced shooters shooting with us. We shoot trap, skeet, sporting clays and five stand, so our shooters are well-rounded," Ken Weigel, head coach and president of Packerland Scholastic Clay Shooting Program, said.
So far, the program has 30 students of all ages and from all schools in the area. The Bay Port team has seven athletes.
Every September, athletes from the different schools compete against each other in a shooting competition. This year, the Bay Port team took home the traveling trophy.
Bryce Cowling has been an athlete with the club for five years. He said he was thrilled to "win with his team" this year.
"The most rewarding thing was probably this trophy right here. Just to be able to take this home and show it off at school, show it off at a game..." Cowling said. "Just to show what we work toward and how we compete for it."
The trophy will be presented during the halftime show at the Bay Port football homecoming game on Friday.
However, Cowling said the program is more than the competition and craft.
"It's not just about the aspect of shooting. That is a great part, but it's more so about the bonding with everyone else around the club," Cowling said.
Weigel added that the positive life skills learned are the biggest payoff for the students.
"Respect of others and respect of firearms...they're well-rounded in marksmanship as well as respect and responsibility," Weigel said. "They're lifelong skills that will last forever."
Weigel said his hopes for the future of the program are to continue to expand the number of students involved and add more learning opportunities and activities. Interested students can get involved by checking out Packerland Shoots on Facebook.