June 21, 2023 at 4:37 p.m.
Sauk Centre trapshooting takes eighth in Alexandria
Siblings often share similar characteristics, but Maddy and Carter Schuster went a step further at the 2023 Trapshooting Championship June 15.
The brother-sister combination earned Sauk Centre’s highest varsity male and female scores, registering sixth-place finishes in helping Class 4A representative Sauk Centre to eighth place at Alexandria Shooting Park in Alexandria.
“The kids run the gamut,” said Jeff Schuster, head coach. “They make no excuses, because when it comes down to it, we have to go out and compete. I’m proud of how they handle it. It wasn’t an easy season by any means, but they do a great job of it.”
The long-awaited stage of competition after a five-week regular season and several more opportunities to train, Sauk Centre’s shooters showed results when it mattered, especially from the program’s top-of-the-line seniors. The aforementioned Carter Schuster posted a team-leading 97 out of a possible score of 100; Jarod Drobny finished tied for 15th with a 96; Owen Christians recorded a 93 for 54th place; Aaron Kerfeld finished 73rd at 92 and Mitchell Christen put up an 81 for 267th.
“Out of the group of five, they had four perfect rounds,” Coach Schuster said. “Those five seniors who graduated shot the last squad together. I thought I’d have to chase them off the field because they were giving each other high fives and stuff. They didn’t want to leave.”
The varsity female depth Sauk Centre boasts was also on display. Along with Maddy Schuster’s 93, the Streeters also received a boost from Aubree Randall and Alexis Groetsch, who ranked 25th with an 85 and 36th with a 77, respectively.
“Aubree and Alexis were two of our top shooters within the conference,” Coach Schuster said. “They wound up in the top 25 for the female division. They scored really well throughout the season.”
Sauk Centre featured 15 junior varsity boys competitors, with four more boys representing the program in the novice division. Parker Sorenson and Aidan McKeown narrowly missed out on the 90 mark, finishing back-to-back at 89 and 88, respectively. Garrett Leagjeld was the squad’s top-ranked novice athlete at 72 in 38th place.
Coach Schuster was impressed by all of these performances, given the large scale of competition and the nerve-wracking nature of trapshooting as a sport.
“It takes a bit of bravery in this sport to even compete, because you get instant feedback in front of everyone watching,” he said. “Either that target breaks or it doesn’t. There’s a lot of emotions that go into each round.”
The Streeters finished a long-winding, eventful day of shooting with a total score of 471. Detroit Lakes, with a team tally of 482, grabbed the top spot.
With another campaign in the books, the goal of Sauk Centre trapshooting continues to be gradual growth as a program while offering opportunities for student-athletes looking for an accessible activity chalk-full of life lessons.
“Not everybody is a football or basketball player and not everyone is brave enough to go up in a One Act play,” Coach Schuster said. “This is something we can train anybody to do, boys or girls. We’re excited to watch the successes our kids have and we feel like we’re putting more kids in touch with feeling like Mainstreeters.”