ELLERBE, N.C. (April 28, 2014) — Teams from Gray Stone Day School and Park Ridge Christian School emerged as champions at the 2014 Youth Hunter Education Skills Tournament, the pre-collegiate shooting sports state championship, held Saturday by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission at Millstone 4-H Center in Richmond County.
Youth competed in team and individual categories for rifle, shotgun, archery and compass on senior (high school) and junior (middle and elementary schools) divisional levels, with overall team and individual awards based on aggregate scores in all events.
The Gray Stone “Gray” team won the senior division with an overall score of 3,856 out of a possible 4,000, while Park Ridge Christian won the junior division with an overall score of 3,610. Both schools are in Stanly County. Team and individual winners available here.
There were 554 students from 54 teams participating in this year’s tournament, having advanced from nine district events across the state where there was combined participation by more than 2,700 students from 290 schools. Overall attendance, including spectators, staff and competitors at the tournament was estimated as approaching 2,500.
“From an event perspective, the 36th annual tournament was probably the most efficient and best organized I have witnessed, and I can’t thank the volunteers, wildlife officers and hunter education specialists enough for their hard work,” said Travis Casper, the state hunting education coordinator and tournament director. “The teams did their part, too, and the level of competition was outstanding. We saw 26 new teams participate this year. The tournament series continues to grow.”
The Fred Rorrer Trophy, which recognizes sportsmanship among competitors, was presented to Northeast Academy, of Lasker, N.C. The trophy honors its namesake, a longtime hunting education instructor with the Wildlife Commission who died unexpectedly in October 2010. Rorrer is remembered for his dedication to conservation and leadership in the youth tournaments, where he helped bolster North Carolina teams and individuals to the top levels of national competition.
The Commission’s Hunter Education Program holds the tournaments as an opportunity for youth to showcase outdoor skills and demonstrate safety. Teams are organized within public and private schools, while home-schooled students and teams representing organizations such as 4-H or FFA also can compete, provided they meet eligibility requirements. For more information, call 919-707-0031 or go to www.ncwildlife.org.