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Skeet Champions Crowned at USA Shooting National Championship for Shotgun

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (October 10, 2018)

The USA Shooting National Championships came to a close with the crowning of Skeet National Champions on a cold, snowy day at the International Shooting Park just south of Fort Carson, Colorado.

In addition to National Championship titles, National and National Junior Team appointments were also at stake; as well as prize money for the top overall finishers in each discipline, courtesy of our longtime team sponsor White Flyer.

After 250 targets of Qualification and a Final, 2017 Women’s Skeet National Champion Dania Vizzi (Odessa, Florida) repeated her title today, battling wind, snow and unseasonably cold conditions for early October. Vizzi entered the Final with the top Qualification score of 243, then she battled to the end of the 60-shot Final to tie 18-year-old Sam Simonton (Gainesville, Georgia) with 57 targets. The gold and silver medals were to be decided in a shootoff, with Vizzi winning, 4-3.

“It was my first time shooting in snow so that was pretty exciting,” said Vizzi. “I also broke two of my personal records so that was the biggest accomplishment for me. I thought it was pretty nice to see the target against the all-gray background, but I think the hardest part was my hands getting so cold. I’d be ‘Did I pull the trigger or not?’ The shootoff was fun and a good experience – especially with such a high score.”

Austen Smith (Kellar, Texas), who just a month ago won bronze in Junior Women’s Skeet at the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Championship in Changwon, South Korea, won the bronze medal today in the Women’s Skeet competition.

On the men’s side, Christian Elliott (Greenville, Indiana/U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit) won gold over his USAMU teammate Dustan Taylor (Staley, North Carolina). Elliott entered the Final with the top Qualification score of 246/250 targets. Elliott also won last year’s Junior Men’s Skeet National Championship title.

“I started out with two, 123s so that was really good to start in the top spot,” Elliott said. “Then it got dark, cold and the sun went away at the beginning of the Final, so I had to do a lens change. Missed a couple targets early, did the lens change, but then we were back on track.”

Zach McBee (College Station, Texas) won the Men’s Skeet bronze medal.

In the Junior Men’s Skeet Final, National Champion Eli Christman (Hixson, Tennessee) equaled the Junior Finals World Record of 58/60 targets for the top Finals performance of the day. Christman just missed out on a spot in the Open Final by one target, but he would then edge out his World Championship teammate and National Junior Olympic champion Nic Moschetti (Broomfield, Colorado) to win the gold medal. Moschetti won silver and Alex Ahlin (Bamberg, South Carolina) won the bronze medal.

“It was mixed emotions going into this match for me, being that it’s my last one as a Junior,” said Christman. “Meant the world to me to go into it with my World Championship teammates. I battled with Nic at the end of the Final at National Junior Olympics and he got me there, but we help make each other better.”

Defending Junior Women’s Skeet National Champion Katie Jacob (Rochester, Michigan) successfully defended her title by winning gold with 50 targets in the Final. Jacob, who was hospitalized earlier in the week upon her arrival in Colorado Springs, battled more than the weather to repeat as National Champion.

“It was very cold!” Jacob said. “It was a rough start for sure – starting out in the hospital and that – but I decided just to shoot because I wanted to, and I can’t stay away! Overall it turned out decent, I’m just happy to be here. I’m getting better. The cold made it difficult to feel my fingers and I almost dropped that last pass, but I’m kind of used to it, having to train in Michigan.”

Taking the silver was Gracin Anderson (Englewood, Tennessee) and Karsyn Ross (Seguin, Texas) won the bronze.

More than 200 athletes from across the country and three countries descended on Colorado Springs to compete in the USA Shooting National Championships September 29 – October 10.

Complete Skeet Results

Complete Results from the National Championships

View and download images from the Skeet competition at the USA Shooting National Championships

 

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