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Local Sports

Trap shooting and a little something else

Spring brings a great deal of high school sports activity with track, tennis, golf and soccer.

There’s also a non-traditional club sport offered in the spring to high school students. It’s not a sanctioned high school sport in Iowa but is popular. I’m talking about trap shooting.

Jasper County has three high school trap clubs — Newton, PCM and Baxter. Newton it the oldest established club among the three as it started competing in 2007. Baxter’s club began in 2014 and PCM is in its second season of competition.

Since 2007, the Newton Trap Club has allowed NHS students with interest in competitive trap shooting to compete in the Iowa High School Clay Target Association (IHSCTA) and the Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP). Trap team members are required to have completed a hunter safety course.

First-year shooters are classified as junior varsity. Shooters are required to have competed in at least four trap league events to qualify to go to the state trap competition.

Paul Klein is in his ninth season with the Newton club and is in his eighth year as head coach. Joel Proving, Lynn Gifford and Bo Eggars are volunteer coaches.

Chad Wood presented the idea of organizing a district-sanctioned trapshooting club to the PCM school board in October 2016. It was approved in November 2017.

Newton has at least 12 returning athletes who competed a year ago. Trap shooting is a coed sport where competition squads can be coed or male or female. Two of Newton’s top shooters are senior girls Brooke Gifford and Allison Ulrey.

Speaking of women in sports ... to take up a little on what Newton Daily Sports sports writer Troy Hyde shared in his Thursday column, I have something to say about Iowa women’s basketball and the run to the NCAA Elite Eight this season.

Wow, what a great run it was by the Hawkeyes. The state of Iowa had a tremendous women’s basketball season in 2018-19.

I’m a Big 12 Conference supporter, mainly because I went to Kansas State University. I cheer on most of the teams in the Big 12 in all sports.

I’m proud to be able to point out to people that Megan Gustafson of the University of Iowa is the AP women’s player of the year in 2019. What a great ambassador for the Hawkeyes, women’s basketball and humanity in general.

This brings me to the NCAA Women’s Final Four and top-ranked Baylor of the Big 12. I want Oregon, UConn or Notre Dame to win the tournament and not Baylor.

I don’t have anything against the Baylor players. I have little respect for Baylor head coach Kim Mulkey, who was awarded the AP women’s coach of the year honor on Thursday.

It got even less last week. The rants she had about Gustafson and the accolades the Iowa center was getting and her player “is a damn good player” is due more respect were uncalled for.

Coach Mulkey, no one said your team’s 6-foot-7 center wasn’t good. Be respectful to other players on teams. Gustafson earned all those accolades with a strong work ethic and a team mindset.

We need to celebrate our own team and not tear down other teams or players. Be happy we have such good role models for women’s sports.

Contact Jocelyn Sheets
at jsheets@newtondailynews.com

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