Spring 2019

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WHEN IT WAS FORMED IN 2014, the Mount Marty shotgun sports team was the first collegiate trap shooting club in South Dakota. Its next target is to grow the only var- sity team in the state by providing tal- ent-based scholarships to students who have a passion for shotgun sports. The private, four-year Catholic Benedictine college on the Missouri River bluffs has already approved the program's varsity status. Now it's up to head coach Randy Hummel to take it to that next level. "Basically we need students to come in and say they're coming here for the shoot- ing program," Hummel says. "And as soon as that happens, the school is going to pull the trigger. Almost everyone on my team right now has a scholarship in some other sport—tennis, golf, etc. We just need to get a group of kids interested in scholarships for the shotgun program." Hummel, a veteran 4-H shooting sports instructor, was asked to help out shortly after the team's founding and quickly took over the role of head coach. At its start, stu- dents came out to try the sport, but nobody was really serious, Hummel says. The team has averaged eight to 10 members since then and it has gradually grown more com- petitive, shooting trap, skeet and sporting clays at both regional and national events. The move to build a varsity program s e e m e d l i k e a n a t u r a l t r a n s i t i o n t h a t would benefit the school and community alike, Hummel says. " We r e a l l y f e e l s t r o n g l y a b o u t t h e shooting sports," he says. "We thought it was a good opportunity to get people com- ing to Yankton, and more people coming to Mount Marty if you have an opportuni- ty to get a scholarship to do that." The colleg e's setting provides close access to national parks, hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities, making trap shooting a natural fit. The team practices a couple of times a week in the fall and spring at two nearby ranges: Jim River Trap Range and James Valley Range. Though most students have some fire- arm experience, Hummel has also worked with newcomers to the sport. Everyone is welcome, he says, "If you come in with a background in shooting we will certainly work with you to get a scholarship and support, but any- body is welcome," Hummel says. "If you 36 PULLUSA MAGAZINE SPRING 2019 THE FIELD C OL L EGE SP O T L IGH T E N R O L L M E N T S I Z E O F T E A M L O CAT I O N 1,048 8–10 Yank ton, SD mtmc.edu NEXT LEVEL MOUNT MARTY IS THE FIRST COLLEGE IN SOUTH DAKOTA WITH A VARSITY SHOOTING SPORTS PROGRAM by JAKE WEYER My biggest goal is that ever yone on the team learns teamwork, that they learn what it takes to succeed. — R A N DY H U M M E L , H E A D C OAC H , M O U N T M A R T Y S H O T G U N S P O R T S T E A M " "

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