High School Riflery
EC firing on all cylinders with undefeated start
by Chris Goltermann
East Coweta’s rifle team is firing on all cylinders heading past the halfway point of the Georgia High School Association’s 2013-14 schedule.
And juniors Glen Lauzon and Destiny Collier are again helping to lead the way.
The returning shooters have helped East Coweta open the season undefeated heading into today’s scheduled showdown (weather permitting) at home against fellow unbeaten Stockbridge.
While both teams entered this week at 7-0, ECHS competitors are leading top-heavy Area 5 with a team average of 1143.43 out of a possible 1200 following a season-best score of 1160 against Eagles Landing on Jan. 23.
Coming off a trip to last year’s GHSA Championships, East Coweta has already qualified its top four shooters individually for the state meet in Columbus after putting together scores at, or above, 290 out of a possible 300.
Collier leads the team with a 294 in the 3X20 three-position air rifle format with highs of 99 in prone as well as 98 and 99 respectively in more challenging standing and kneeling positions.
Lauzon is one of 11 shooters from Area 5 — which includes perennial powers like Union Grove — that have a perfect 100 this season in the prone position.
Ahead this weekend for East Coweta’s Marine Corps Air Rifle team is the annual JROTC Marine Service Championships at the Civilian Marksmanship Center in Anniston, Ala., starting Saturday.
Already, though, it’s been a busy and prosperous 2014 for Lauzon, who went on to place ninth in last year’s NJROTC Service Championships.
Most recently, he qualified for the upcoming USA Shooting Junior Olympics in April, is among four ECHS shooters that have already qualified indi- vidually for the Georgia High School Association State Championships in Columbus the same month.
Lauzon – a Marine Corps JROTC cadet with the rank of Sergeant — will compete in the 17-21 year-old division at the Junior Olympics in Colorado Springs after posting a score of 581 in a 6X20 qualifier on Jan. 11 at the Ole Mill Range in Griffin.
“Glen has worked very hard all year around and deserves this significant achievement,” said Major Pete Merrill, senior instructor for East Coweta’s Marine Corps JROTC. “He shoots just about every week- end at local and regional matches. He has been a very consistent shooter and has served as an excellent example to the rest of the team. He is very knowledgeable about the finer details and mental toughness of competitive shooting.”
Lauzon, who has a season high of 292 so far in the GHSA schedule heading into this week, qualified for last year’s Junior Olympics but chose to compete in the state high school championships due to conflicting schedules.
That won’t be the case in 2014. Should East Coweta make its nearly annual trip to the GHSA Championships, having missed just once over the last decade, the state finals will be held on April 12 in Columbus.
The Junior Olympics follow the week of April 21.
“I’m stoked,” said Lauzon, who began competing with the Coweta 4-H on BB and Air Rifle teams. “It was a goal of mine to make it to these competitions this year.”
Junior Alexandria Wright, who finished among the top 50 shooters in Area 5 last year as a first-year competitor for East Coweta in 2013, has quickly moved to the top-10 in Area 5 this season with a season-high
of 291 including a yearly best of 100 in prone along with Lauzon. Lauzon says he enjoys the challenge of precision shooting sports.
“It’s something you can always improve on,” he said. “I’m a perfectionist, so it appeals to me.”
Sophomore Jonathan Satterfield, meanwhile, has quickly given the team a fourth state qualifier in his first varsity season. An impressive season high of 292 also has included a best in prone of 100.
The Area 5 championships are set for March 7 with the first round of the GHSA Sec- tionals slated to follow on March. 22.