West Virginia 4-H shooting team places in in national competition

CHARLESTON, W.Va. –– A team of shooters with West Virginia 4-H came away with a top five finish in the recent national competition event.

The air rifle squad representing West Virginia included Emilee Allison of Wood County, Aubrey Dillon of Wayne County, and Nathan Jordan of Doddridge County. Each qualified through the regional and state 4-H shooting competitions to earn a spot on the state team.

Emilee Allison, Wood County, W.Va.

At the National Competition in Grand Island, Nebraska, the team finished 5th overall. Out of 93 shooters, Dillon finished 15th, Allison was 30th, and Jordan was right behind her with a 31st place finish.

“We were really close to not having a team, but we all got together and really pushed through it and kept our team going. If we had only had two, we would have only had individuals, so I’m really glad we could all push through it,” said Allison in an appearance on West Virginia Outdoors.

The Air Rifle discipline is just one of many offered within the 4-H Shooting Sports program. Along with air rifle there is archery–both compound and recurve bows, air pistol, shotgun, muzzleloader, hunting skills, smallbore pistol, and 22-rifle. Along with West Virginia’s air rifle team, the state sent a team in air pistol and shotgun to the national event. The air pistol team finished 7th.

Emilee explained, it’s a lot of shooting and takes a lot of concentration.

“When I shoot the three-position match, I shoot about 60 shots and do that twice in a night. So that’s 120 shots in a night plus sighters. The silhouette portion of it I would go through two full rounds which would be about 20 shots each,” she explained about her practice regimen.

Listen to “Emily Allison — 4-h shooting on WV Outdoors” on Spreaker.

In preparation for the event, Emilee was shooting at least twice and sometimes three times a week. A strong finish for the team showed the level of dedication to preparation.

Emilee shoots with the Sharpshooters 4-H Club in Wood County. She started a couple of years ago and has loved every minute of it. She said she’ll be doing it for at least the rest of her days at Parkersburg South High School.

“I think my love for hunting and guns led me to start. When I moved here I was looking for things to do and this was the first thing that popped up. I decided I loved it so much I would keep pursuing it because I love it so much and see if I could get better,” she said.

Emilee’s club consists of around 40 members who participate in a number of the shooting disciplines. One of the big highlights of the year is getting to meet the WVU Rifle Team and shoot on the Bill McKenzie Rifle Range at WVU. The state championship competition was held there this year and Emilee had a chance to meet WVU All-American and Olympic shooter Mary Tucker.

Nationally more than 500,000 students compete in the 4-H Shooting Sports programs. The perspective shows just how big of an accomplishment it was for West Virginia’s shooters to place in the top five as a team.

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