Prophetstown Trap Shooting Team is first of its kind in IL QCA

WHITESIDE COUNTY, Ill (KWQC)- It's competition day at the Morrison Sportsman's Club, but only one team showed up to shoot.

"It's a little different," said Eric Wetzell, a Prophetstown High School Junior. "We're not directly competing against someone."

That's because the nearest team is more than 60 miles away.

"The closest other town to us is Brimfield, and then there's another team on the edge of Chicago," said J.C. Henrekin, the head coach of the Prophetstown High School Trap Shooting Team.

Henrekin is the brainchild of the operation, and the head coach.

The idea to create the team started as he and a few friends were trap shooting during Henrekin's birthday.

"We went to the school board meeting about two days later," he said. "We had to have approval about two days after that."

A meeting was held to see if students were interested, 19 kids showed up.

"We just kinda hit the ground running from there," he said.

The Prophetstown Trap Shooting Team was born.

The team has kids in grades 6th through 12th.

"I'm pretty much a starter," said Kevin Sigel, a senior on the team. "Over time I'll get better and my scores will get better hopefully."

"It's been a really great thing," said Alec Wetzell, another senior shooter.

Both agree it has been rewarding so far.

"I know I really focus in on what I'm doing," said Sigel. "You zone out and only focus on what you're doing. You can't really think about anything else."

"I've improved quite a bit with my stance and my performance overall," added Wetzell.

Improvement is exactly what coach wants.

"Safety has been number one, marksmanship and then fun are the three priorities we have," Henrekin said.

As Friday's tournament comes to a close, the scores will be reported to the state so shooters can qualify.

Each kid will get to shoot 25 clay pigeons on two different tries. Then those will be sent to the state each week. Another score is sent with the top eight shooters for a team score.

"You wanna break 25," said Sigel. "Once you do you're going to be really happy about it."