Teams hit their marks in shooting competitionPublished 11:37am Saturday, September 14, 2013
4-H YOUTH DEVELOPMENT AGENT
WAKEFIELD—For three years, Matthew Shaffer, 14, of Suffolk participated at shooting competitions in the Junior Division. However, when he attended the Southeast District 4-H Shoot Competition on June 29, he was finally old enough to compete with his brother Joshua, 18, in the Senior Division.
Participating in a variety of team and individual events using different devices – shotguns, rifles, and bows – the brothers along with 11 other youth from the Airfield 4-H Swamp Shooters represented the Tidewater Area well.
“[Our teams] brought both the [trap and skeet] shotgun team trophies home,” Matthew Shaffer said.
This victory was nothing new for the club.
“The past three years [the Swamp Shooters] have brought home trophies,” he said.
Not only is Matthew Shaffer involved in the 4-H Club with his brother Joshua, but also his oldest brother Andrew, 20, is a past member; his father, Jeff, serves as an archery instructor; and his mother, Marcy, is the Airfield 4-H Club coordinator.
“Our 13 shooters did very well at the Southeast District Shoot. As coaches we are very proud of them,” Marcy Shaffer said.
Now the club is preparing for the State 4-H Shoot, which takes place Sept. 13-15 at Holiday Lake. In addition to Matthew and Joshua, the club will have six other members participating in the competition.
While Matthew Shaffer is anxious to see how he does in the shotgun competition at the State 4-H Shoot, Marcy Shaffer is looking forward to the family time.
“They have an event called Seneca Trail where the whole family can experience ‘old-timey stuff,’ ” she said. Activities include black powder guns, tomahawk throwing and creating sparks with flint and steel.
Following the State 4-H Shoot, the family will resume it regular schedule with the Swamp Shooters, which is a junior team of the Airfield Shooting Club.
“They provide us with storage space, equipment, coaches, and targets,” Marcy Shaffer said.
The Airfield 4-H Club meets every second and fourth Sunday at the Airfield 4-H Center near Wakefield. They have experienced coaches, most of them have participated in shooting education for the majority of their life – from armed forces officers to an Olympic medalist.
“We are excited about having others join. Our volunteer coaches look forward to instructing, coaching, and training. Several of our youth are also trained as Junior Instructors,” Marcy Shaffer shared.
Before the next practice, however, the team will be traveling to Holiday Lake and competing as individuals. While they will be competing against one another, they are a very supportive group.
“We don’t rub it in if we beat someone else… We’re pretty friendly,” Matthew Shaffer admitted.
For more information about 4-H, joining the club, or the Airfield 4-H Center, call Celia Brockway at the Southampton County Extension Office, 653-2572.
Airfield 4-H Swamp
Shooter Southeast District
4-H Shoot Results
Participants: Martin, Johnny and Mishko Prikasky (Suffolk, now Mississippi); Joshua and Matthew Shaffer (Suffolk); Barton Metzgar (Suffolk); Chase and Carly Parker (Gates, N.C.); Noah Cardellino (Hopewell); Julie Manning (Norfolk); and Elaine Miller (Suffolk)
Silhouettes (animal shaped targets down rang at 40 and 50 meters)
Joshua Shaffer, 5th
Barton Metzgar, 9th
Chase Parker, 12th
Martin Prikasky, 14th
Johnny Prikasky, 6th
Light Rifle-Iron Sights
Barton Metzgar, 1st
Martin Prikasky, 2nd
Mishko Prikasky, 2nd
Johnny Prikasky, 3rd
Archery – Compound Bows
Elaine Miller (Suffolk) 4th
Archery – Genesis Bow with No Let Off
Matthew Shaffer, 1st
Carly Parker, 2nd
Shotgun – Skeet
Team Ranking, 1st
Martin Prikasky, 4th
Noah Cardelino, 9th
Matthew Shaffer, 10th
Chase Parker twelfth
Mishko Prikasky, 5th
Shotgun – Trap
Team Ranking, 1st
Martin Prikasky, 6th
Joshua Shaffer, 7th
Noah Cardelino, 8th
Matthew Shaffer, 9th
Julie Manning, 14th
Mishko Prikasky, 8th
Johnny Prikasky, 10th