The St. Croix Central FFA trapshooting team captured second place at the 2019 Wisconsin State HIgh School Clay Target State Tournament on June 8 in Rome.
Freshman Ethan Boettcher and Junior John Miles III tied for second place at state with four other individuals who all scored 99 out of 100. Boettcher ended up in third place and Miles was fourth overall high gun. Hunter Knotwell of Lancaster High School was the lone person to finish with a perfect 100 score. Using reverse run for a tiebreaker, Boettcher ended up third and Miles fourth.
Central finished second out of 73 teams with a team score of 476. The team had many students step up with strong performances. Junior Jared Tritz shot a perfect round and received a 25 patch. Miles earned a 25 and 50 patch. Boettcher earned a 25, 50 and 75 patch. Isaac Bauer, Riley Becker, Abby Boettcher and Kelton Rozeboom all shot a round of 24.
"We have some really great new talent on the team," said team manager Pam Miles. "Bauer, one of our sixth graders in his first season, shot a 91."
Central had six students shoot in the 90s: Bauer and Becker at 91, Abby Boettcher at 93, Tritz at 94, and Miles and Ethan Boettcher at 99.
"Our varsity team performed better than they have ever performed in the six years (the team) has existed," Miles said.
This season started out slowly for the team with many delays caused by the weather. The original signup was scheduled for January, but wasn't held until March.
"Every time I scheduled it, there was a snowstorm," Miles said. "One of our coaches drove their snowmobile to the first meeting."
The weather was the least of the worries for the team as long-time coach Greg Boettcher was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer.
"We felt it all spring, the concern," Miles said.
Boettcher, who also shoots trap, has coached the Central trap team since its inception and his oldest son, Austin, was a team member. The club has been supportive of its trap family, with the hashtag "#pullforgreg" being a big part of the season.
"Coach Greg Boettcher was diagnosed in November 2018. While he is battling this terrible diagnosis and going through chemo treatments, we wanted to show our love and support for coach Greg and the Boettcher family. This trap team is unique in that we consider our team as family. Hence, the #PULLFORGREG shirt was designed so that we could not only show support for Greg and the Boettcher family, but also raise colon cancer awareness. Our thoughts and prayers are with coach Greg as he prepares to kick cancer's butt," Miles stated.
Miles said she is grateful to the other coaches who stepped up in the absence of Boettcher, and another coach, Mel Warren, who couldn't participate this season.
"Coach Dave Thorsen really stepped up a lot this spring. After Greg's cancer diagnosis and Mel's knee problems, these two guys were really involved in coaching and they couldn't coach as much this season. That's when Dave stepped up," Miles said. "He worked with the kids individually and up on the line. All of the coaches are greatly appreciated."
The top state competitors advance to the national tournament, where the best shooters from each state are invited to compete. The national tournament will be held July 10-14 in Mason, Mich. Central will be sending Abby Boettcher, Ethan Boettcher, Miles, Rozeboom and Brock Thorsen.
For more SCC trap information, find them on Facebook under St. Croix Central FFA Trap Shooting Club or contact Pam Miles at email@example.com or Central FFA advisor Gretchen Rozeboom at firstname.lastname@example.org.