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Local youth trap shooter brings more awards home to Rugby

By Sue Sitter - | Jul 31, 2021

Submitted Photo Kordell Kraft, center, stands with his teammates representing Rugby in the Amateur Trap Shooting Association’s North Dakota State Shoot in Bismarck. On Kraft’s left are Zach Jaeger and Carson Mattern. On Kraft’s right are Monica Yoder and Jadyn Barclay.

Another young Rugby trap shooter has brought top honors back to his hometown from state-level competition.

Kordell Kraft, son of Scott and Melissa Kraft, Rugby, finished the Amateur Trap Shooting Association’s North Dakota State Shoot in Bismarck July 25 as the top junior overall in the state. Kraft’s top score among juniors also ranked him as High Overall Junior in the tourney.

Kraft scored consistently among top shooters of all ages in the four-day competition, beating more than 100 others of all age groups. The event began July 21 and ended July 25.

In a team competition for the state tournament July 21, Kraft’s 99/100 and 98/100 scores added to teammate Zach Jaeger’s 99/100 score to land Rugby’s junior team in second place.

After the July 21 junior events, shooters competed with other age groups in individual events. Although the shooters’ levels were noted on score sheets, their scores were computed with all others for their overall ranks in the competition.

“There are people anywhere from 12 years old, I think that was the youngest guy there, to one guy there who was in his upper 80s. All skill levels shoot,” Kraft said.

“Thursday and Friday, they were preliminary rounds,” Kraft said of the July 22 and 23 shoots. “So Thursday, there were singles, handicap and doubles. For singles, you stand 16 yards and shoot, for handicap you shoot farther back. I shoot at 23 1/2 yards. You can go all the way back to 27. And doubles is where you stand 16 yards back and shoot two targets at a time,” he explained.

In the July 22 Perry Weiner Singles event, Kraft hit 100 of 100 targets. Kraft saw his lowest score in the Erik Argall Handicap, where he shot 88 of 100 targets. Still, Kraft scored among the top shooters overall.

“For doubles, I shot a 95,” Kraft said. “Then, Friday, I shot a 99 out of 100 for singles; 93 out of 100 for handicap and then the doubles championship round was in the afternoon and I shot 94 out of 100 and won for the junior category.”

“I competed against juniors and others from within the state but there were also non-resident shooters there,” Kraft added. “They give away separate trophies for non-resident shooters. Then, for Saturday, that’s the day they had the singles championship and I shot the highest overall score, 199 out of 200,” he said.

Kraft’s singles championship score beat those of shooters in all age classes.

“The next highest shooter was 198. He was the champion last year,” Kraft noted.

“Then, Sunday, I shot at the handicap championship and I got 91 out of 100 and I got beat by another junior that day. But I did get what was called the High Overall, which was every category from Wednesday though Sunday. They add all those scores up,” Kraft said. “They have another category called High All Around and that was just for the championship round and I won that too.”

“The All Around is not including youth day is a total of 900 targets,” Kraft said. “The overall adds up your total score for the whole week and the all around is for singles championship, doubles championship and handicap championship, which is the handicap out of 100 targets,” Kraft added. “For the singles championship out of 100 targets and the doubles championship out of 200 targets, they just take your score out of 400 and whoever has the highest wins that award.”

Kraft, who will be a senior at Rugby High in August, said he was “very happy” to win the High All Around and High Overall awards.

“I’ve been shooting for five or six years now and it’s just been trying to win the championship and I finally did it. Winning the award was great,” he said. Kraft added his teammates were happy for him as well.

Kraft said he’s always liked to hunt, especially for birds, which helps with his trap shooting skills.

“I believe I started doing this in the seventh grade,” he said of his competitive shooting and hunting.

“I plan on doing this for a long time and I’ve met a lot of people who started young and started doing good later in life and that’s what I plan on doing,” Kraft added.

Melissa Kraft said she was “so very proud” of her son. “He is unstoppable,” she said. “His accomplishments amaze me!

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