A Shot at GloryWest ashley High Takes First Place in State Skeet Competition
March 2, 2017
From Staff Reports
West Ashley High School’s (WAHS) skeet shooting team, the Clay Busters, blew past the competition in the State Skeet Shooting Competition recently. The Clay Busters finished in first and second place for new schools in trap and first place overall in skeet for new schools.
The tournament was held at the South Carolina Palmetto Shooting Complex in Edgefield on Feb. 10-11.
This is the first year WAHS has had a skeet shooting team; they are the only school in Charleston County School District (CCSD) to have a team.
“I’ve always loved shooting, and wanted to do it as a competition,” said Clay Busters team member Hunter Cone.
“I saw a need,” said Clay Busters Coach and WAHS Outdoors Pursuit teacher Thomas Cousins. “Students were asking me if it were possible to start [a team].”
Cousins volunteered to be the coach and a total of eight students joined the team: Max Smalls, Bryce Simons, Trae Baumrind, Drake Wieczorek, Ethan Wacaster, D.J. Williamson, and Hunter Cone.
“The students got sponsors on their own to help defray the cost of being on the team,” said Cousins.
According to Cousins, Halls Chophouse, Coastal Services HVAC, Williamson Welding, Sarah C. Wacaster, Smoak’s Heating and Air, and Dan-Kel Concrete are just a few of the sponsors the students acquired this year.
Another big sponsor for the team is the Charleston County Parks and Recreation. They allow Cousins and his team to use Bulow Plantation as one of the places they practice on Tuesday of each week. They practice at Partridge Creek Gun Club as well.
The Clay Busters surpassed Cousins’ expectations for his first year team in the State Skeet Shooting Competition.
“I think the competition went great,” said Cousins. “[I’ve enjoyed] seeing them get better and better each week.”
A total of 25 schools participated in the State Skeet Shooting Competition, including schools like Orangeburg Preparatory, Strom Thurman High, and Newberry Academy.
The tournament was a two-day event. On the first day of the competition, the teams shot 50 rounds of trap. On the second day, they shot 50 rounds of skeet. Each team had the opportunity to earn a total of 50 points per day.
“Overall as a team, we have gotten a lot better [since] the first time we shot,” said Cone.
“We shot well, improved our scores from the last meet, and proved that we are the best new team in the state,” added Cousins.