Courtesy of Debbie Larcom
The Valdez Junior Rifle Club is a non-profit organization that teaches firearm safety, basic marksmanship, and precision shooting ages 12 to 18. They generally compete in three competitions a year, the Junior Olympic Rifle Competition in Fairbanks which includes both Air Rifle and 3-Position Smallbore, a Valdez 4-Position Smallbore, and a 3-Position Smallbore and Standing Air Rifle competition in Delta.
This year we took three athletes, Tiffany Larcom, Sydney McKay, and Ashlee Schaeffer to Fairbanks to compete in the state Junior Olympics Rifle Competition. Tiffany Larcom Placed 3rd and earned the Bronze Medal in the Ladies Smallbore Competition. She shot 553 out of 600 and was just 4 points from being invited to the National Junior Olympic Competition in Colorado Springs.
Valdez Junior 4-Position Competition was very close. Tiffany Larcom (Valdez) took the Gold, Jacob Stillie (Delta) the Silver, Leah Maxwell (Delta) the Bronze, The Delta Rifle Club won the Team Event, Jason Smilie (Valdez) First Place in the Sub-Junior, Gabe Ranger (Valdez) the Tyro (first time competitor with the highest score), and Sara Bauman (Valdez) received the Silver Eagle for being the first Valdez athlete to score a perfect score of 100.
The Delta Competition was very exciting. Tiffany Larcom took First Place and Ashlee Schaeffer took Third Place in the Smallbore 3-Position Competition for Intermediate Junior. The entire Valdez group had their personal best scores in the Delta Standing 40 Air Rifle Competition. Tiffany Larcom took Third Place in the Standing 40 Air Rifle Competition for the Intermediate Juniors.
We wrapped up the season helping at the NRA Banquet with four of our athletes, Sara Bauman, Sydney Mc Kay, Gabe Ranger, and Ashlee Schaeffer receiving their Distinguished Expert Medals. This is a very difficult task, usually taking up to a year and half.
We certainly have some amazing athletes who are very grateful to Valdez Parks and Rec, United Way of Valdez, the NRA, USA Shooting, and the City of Valdez Schools for their support. It is a privilege to work with every single athlete. I just love watching their enthusiasm for the shooting sport and excitement at achieving their goals! Can’t wait to see what the future holds for us!