Sunny skies and warm temperatures greeted members of the SCTP National Team attending USA Shooting’s Spring Selection Match in Tucson, Arizona. While the weather was a respite for competitors arriving from the more frozen parts of the country, these athletes did not have vacationing on their mind; they knew that the results of this match would be used to determine who would be traveling to this year’s Pan American Games, World Championships, Junior World Cup, and the two remaining 2019 ISSF (International Shooting Sports Federation) World Cups.
“There are two ways to look at these last 11 days of shooting,” Coach Terri DeWitt began, “One way is to consider that we that didn’t place an SCTP National Team athlete on one of the World teams this year. But that’s not really the big picture. Another way to look at the past two weeks is to see the really stellar performances we did have! I’m so proud of all of these athletes for their perseverance, their positive attitudes, and their commitment to this journey. We will build on this experience and we’ll be back.”
A couple of those stellar performances came from Matthew Wells and Erin Lokke. Matthew Wells was one target short of earning a spot on the Junior Men’s trap team which will travel to Lonato, Italy for the Shotgun World Championship and to Suhl, Germany for the ISSF Junior World Cup; Matt finished in third place after the junior men’s final concluded, but because of the point system selection process which uses an athlete’s qualification score as well as finals placement, he actually finished fourth overall in Junior men’s trap. Only the top three are selected.
On the skeet side, Erin Lokke posted her first ever 25-straight in an International Skeet competition, her new Winchester hat taking the brunt of that success. And to top that off, she’s been invited to attend the ISSF World Cup in Al Ain, U.A.E. as an MQS athlete. This essentially means that, while Erin will be competing at the World Cup as a U.S. athlete, her scores will not be eligible for a medal finish. “An MQS is the Minimum Qualifying Score that every shooting athlete must achieve at least once at an ISSF event sometime in the three years leading up to the Olympic Games in order to be eligible to go to the Olympics. Right now, a Women’s Skeet MQS is 92 out of 125 targets,” explained Coach DeWitt.
“I am very blessed to have this opportunity to go overseas and shoot at my first World Cup. It has been thrilling to see how the training has been paying off and knowing that I can go much further,” Erin comments. “Coming off of a challenging event at (USA Shooting) Nationals (last year) pushed me to try new things and train in conditions that have been both mentally and physically difficult. At Spring Selection, I put my hard work to the test and learned new things to prepare for my next step.”
Erin is the second SCTP National Team athlete to travel overseas as a U.S. National Team member; Maddie Bernau, 2017 SCTP National Team member, won gold at the Junior Grand Prix in Porpetto, Italy last year.
About the SCTP NATIONAL TEAM
The 2019 SCTP National Team is made up of 15 athletes chosen from the SCTP International Championships. 12 Athletes, 3 girls and 3 boys from Bunker Trap and 3 girls and 3 boys from International Skeet plus 3 additional athletes chosen by the Head Coach and National Director make up the 15 2019 SCTP National Team.
The 2019 SCTP National Team is sponsored by Winchester Ammunition. Each SCTP National Team Athlete receives:
- A custom made Castellani Shooting Vest (Castellani is the official vest supplier of the SCTP National Team)
- Winchester “Goodie Bag” including hats, towels and other items
- 2 Winchester Ammunition Shirts, 1 Polo and 1 T-Shirt
- 7 cases of Winchester Ammunition
- Fall Selection Match Fees paid and Ammo provided
- Invitation to participate in 3-5 Training Camps lead by National Team Head Coach, Terri DeWitt.
You can follow the 2019 SCTP National Team including training progress, match schedule and results by clicking on the SCTP tab of the www.sssfonline.com website and on SCTP Social Media.