Sports

August 1, 2013

Skeet shoot isn’t just for adults

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Airman 1st Class Betty R. Chevalier
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Betty R. Chevalier)
Ryan Meger, competitive skeet shooter, prepares to shoot a clay pigeon during a practice round of skeet shooting here July 21. Meger was practicing for an upcoming competition, the Junior World Championship scheduled to be held in San Antonio.

During the early morning of July 21, shooters gathered to practice their shooting skills at the D-M skeet range. Many of the patrons were retired older gentlemen with a few middle-aged men, but what stood out was the man targeting clay pigeons, who wasn’t even yet a teenager.

Ryan Meger shoots skeet and participated in the Junior World Skeet Championship with the National Skeet Shooting Association in San Antonio July 26-28.

Skeet shooting is an activity where participants attempt to break clay disks, called pigeons, using guns. The pigeons are automatically flung into the air from two fixed stations at high speed from a variety of angles.

Ryan started shooting skeet with his dad, Col. James Meger, former 355th Fighter Wing vice commander, about two years ago.

“He just took me out one day and let me hold the gun he bought me,” Ryan said. “We shot a whole round and I was like, ‘This is fun. I’m going to do this tomorrow.’ ”

Ryan says he tries to be at the range as much as he can. Ryan receives coaching from Larry Blount, a coach to help sharpen his skills.

“I volunteer coach,” said Larry Blount, skeet shoot coach. “About two years ago, I was out here shooting when Col. Meger and his son started coming out and shooting, a buddy of mine who shot out here talked the colonel into getting Ryan involved in the Scholastic Clay Target Program.”

Ryan competes about once a month at various locations around Arizona. The Junior World Championship is his first big competition.

Between him and his coaches, they usually shoot about 100 targets at the range during the school year, said Ryan. During the summer, he gets a chance to shoot about 100 more targets per normal. Over three days at the competition, Ryan shot over 500 targets.

With Ryan’s dad being, Blount has been asked to take Ryan to the Junior World Championship.

“Ryan has really stepped it up in the last six months,” Blount said. “He has a lot of potential to win a couple of the guns.”

Ryan competed in six categories. He placed 1st in 28 sub junior and parent/child group, 4th in 12 gauges and 2nd in high overall




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(U.S. Air Force Illustration by Airman 1st Class Cheyenne Morigeau)

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