New university trap shooting facility will be first of its kind south of Little Rock
MAGNOLIA – Southern Arkansas University (SAU) has begun recruiting students for a new trap shooting team in hopes to “Pull!” off another student engagement victory following the successful additions of eSports, bass fishing and disc golf teams.

The new trap shooting team will be open to any interested SAU student and will compete in the Association of College Unions International (ACUI) Collegiate Clay Targeting Program. The sport has become increasingly popular among youth, and high school trap shooters in the region have already expressed an interest in choosing SAU to continue to compete at the next level.

SAU is also in the fundraising phase for a trap shooting range facility to be located on the University’s Governor Ben T. Laney Farm. It will be the first facility of its kind in the state on a university campus south of Little Rock. The facility will feature a clubhouse with restrooms and storage, and three shooting ranges each consisting of five concrete lanes with high and low skeet houses.

The Press Release states that the facility will be home to both the University’s trap shooting team and trap shooting teams from area high schools. It will also host community, regional and state-wide shooting competitions and practices. Plans also include opening the facility to community memberships in the future.

For those new to trap shooting, the Arkansas State High School Clay Target League outlines on their website some of the basics of the sport. In competition, a “squad of up to five athletes will occupy the stations on a trap field.” There are “two 25 target rounds, for a total of 50 targets from the 16-yard station.” Each squad member takes five shots before they move to a new station.

SAU is confident student engagement and involvement will follow the model set by other similar SAU additions. SAU eSports officially “leveled up” from a popular student organization last fall and has been a smash among collegiate gamers on campus. They live, study and practice together in their eSports Living and Learning Community and travel together to competitions across the region. One of the SAU Smash Brothers teams recently won first place and a total of three top-five tournament awards, bringing home trophies for their game lab in Honors Hall. A major expansion to their dedicated space in the second floor of the Reynolds Center rotunda is underway and will house the latest in game technology suitable for hosting competitions and tournaments. Their first tournament, the Mulerider Classic, is scheduled for April 27-28 in Grand Hall. Contact esports@saumag.edu for more information.

Similarly, the SAU bass fishing team and men’s and women’s disc golf teams have earned accolades quickly since each has been established in recent years. In only the disc golf teams’ second year to compete in the National Collegiate Disc Golf Championship in Appling, Georgia, SAU’s women’s disc golfer Madi Chitwood brought home the individual women’s championship and also teamed up with Whitney Brown and Courtney Hunter to dominate and win the women’s team championship. The bass fishing team was established at SAU in 2012 and has also had their eyes set on national acclaim after reeling in high tournament finishes and working their way up the national collegiate fishing team rankings.

For more information about the SAU trap shooting team, contact Sheryl Edwards at sheryledwards@saumag.edu or (870) 235-5090. Donations to SAU Trap Shooting can be made to the SAU Foundation at www.SAUFoundation.org/make-a-gift or by calling (870) 235-4287.