CRARYVILLE — Charlie Beck, an eighth grade Taconic Hills student, came in second place in the NYS Clay Target League competition and competed in nationals last month.
The state competition was held at the Bridgeport Rod and Gun Club, just north of Syracuse. Out of 1,149 students from 59 leagues throughout New York state, Beck ranked second, with a 24 out of a possible 25 average.
With his success in the state competition, Beck was able to participate in the national competition held in July in Michigan.
Nationwide, nearly 22,000 students representing more than 800 school-approved teams participate in leagues. Beck broke 192 out of a possible 200 targets. Beck also participates in the Capital Region Trap league where he maintains a AA average of greater than 23.5.
The Taconic Hills Central School administration and the Board of Education, in cooperation with the Philmont Rod and Gun Club, recently formed a youth trap team.
During the first year there were 24 boys and girls in grades 8-12 participating. Before the students were allowed to participate, they had to successfully complete the NYS Hunter Safety Course that was offered by the club and taught by a certified instructor.
Thanks to donations received from businesses and individuals, the program was offered with no financial resources required from the school district taxpayers.
David Siter, president of the club and lead coach, said that the students demonstrated enthusiasm and dedication to the sport.
“It was a joy to work with and coach such a fine group of youngsters. They were always safe in their handling of firearms and I enjoyed seeing their shooting abilities improve throughout the eight-week season,” he said.