“4-H Shooting Sports teaches our youth responsible and safe use of firearms, discipline, goal setting, teamwork, and concentration. We cannot stress these attributes of our program enough,” Pacific County Shoot Sports Coach George Hernandez said.
“Participating in competition teaches them to learn from and share information with their peers,” he continued. “It teaches that by doing your best, you're already a winner. Participants are eligible to compete on the state level, where those who qualify can go on to the national level. Shooters can apply for and win college scholarships within the program.”
The Pacific County team consisted of Karley and Tyler Reidinger and Jacob Snodgrass, who had qualified to participate at the state level in the .22 rifle classification, according to Lori Snodgrass, mother of Jacob. The three kids completed three rounds in the .22 rifle competition, each testing different abilities with varying rules and requirements.
The first round was the “NRA competition”. It tested target shooting accuracy from the prone, kneeling and standing positions. Second was the “CMP competition”, which measured quick shooting accuracy, and the final round was the “silhouette competition”, in which the kids shot small, metal figures.
“Karley, Jacob, and Tyler had prepared for these events by attending monthly practices at the Willapa Harbor Gun Club under the leadership of their coach, George Hernandez,” explained Snodgrass.
“Even though they were up against much larger clubs, the Pacific County 4-H Shooting Sports team tied for second in state for the "Golden Gun" award,” she said.
The kids also each won their own individual awards. Karley Reidinger placed second for the intermediate division of the .22 rifle. Snodgrass got second and Tyler Reidinger got fourth for the junior division of the .22 rifle.
“In the three years that our team has been competing at state level, the youth who have done well are those with strong family support. We would not be able to do this without the parents' support,” Hernandez said. “Our team did their best and it shows. I'm very proud of their accomplishments!”