Clay Dusters compete at MSHSL State Tournament
Kaiden Walsh leads the way as the Park Rapids trapshooting team finishes 22nd out of 40 teams.
Kaiden Walsh hit 98 out of 100 targets in leading the Park Rapids Clay Dusters trapshooting team to 22nd place at the Minnesota State High School League Clay Target State Tournament at the Minneapolis Gun Club on June 25.
Walsh hit 50 targets in the first round and 48 targets in the second round to lead the Clay Dusters. Alex Eischens hit 46 targets in both rounds for a 92, Tayden George hit 45 and 46 targets for a 91, Bode Lee hit 46 and 43 targets for an 89 and Brandon Landstrom hit 44 in both rounds for an 88 to comprise Park Rapids’ 458 team score. The Clay Dusters were one of 40 teams that qualified for the MSHSL State Tournament. Park Rapids has qualified for state the last five seasons. The 2020 state tournament was canceled due to COVID.
Red Wing won the state title by hitting 484 out of 500 targets. Tri City United was second at 483 and Alden-Conger finished third at 482. Prior Lake (480), New Prague (479), Alexandria (478), Roseau (476), Owatonna (472), Blaine (469) and Fairmont (468) rounded out the top 10 with Bemidji finishing 11th at 468. Other local teams included Detroit Lakes (26th at 455), Thief River Falls (27th at 453), Badger-Greenbush-Middle River (35th at 440) and Pillager (40th at 433).
In the individual portion of the state tournament, Eischens tied for 20th place at 96, Walsh tied for 30th place at 95 and McKenzie Girtz tied for 49th place at 93. All three Park Rapids competitors were among 100 that earned qualifying standards for state.
South St. Paul’s Boone Johnson and Becker’s Bradley Bible shared the state title by hitting all 100 targets. The other Top Gun All-State team members were Randolph’s Cory Timm (99), Mabel-Canton’s Colton Heintz-Kuderer (99), Albert Lea’s Cole Estes (98), Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg’s Hunter Wilts (98), Foley’s Hunter Olson (98) and Annandale’s Jake Mader (98). There were nine competitors who hit 98 targets, six who hit 97 targets, 10 who hit 96 targets, 13 who hit 95 targets, six who hit 94 targets and seven who hit 93 targets of the 92 shooters that competed.
Park Rapids qualified for the MSHSL State Tournament by finishing second with 477 points in the Class 2A division of the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League Trapshooting Championships at Alexandria on June 15.
Leading Park Rapids at that meet were George with 98 targets. Walsh and Eischens with 97 targets, Lee with 93 targets, and Landquist with 92 targets.
This year, 10,528 student athletes representing 324 high school teams across the state participated in the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League this spring.