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Ceres trap shooters bring home awards
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Four Cereans competed in the 2004 California Scholastic Clay Target Program State Trapshooting Championships at the Kingsburg Gun Club on June 19.

Mike and Randy Ebenal and Aaron Goodloe were members of a five-person team that finished second in the Senior-Novice Division.

Tyler Goodloe, Aaron's cousin, competed on an individual basis in the Rookie Class but didn't place.

Mike, Randy and Aaron's team broke 923 targets out of 1,000.

They lost to the first-place team by two targets.

"They all got plagues and Mike got a ribbon," said Greg Ebenal, Mike and Randy's father.

More than 230 youth shooters, representing 13 gun clubs from across the United States, participated in the one-day event.

Mike, Randy and Aaron earned the right to compete at the state competition after placing in the top five at a qualifier tournament at Newman Swamp Rats in May.

"It was a coincidence all three of them qualified to be on the gold team," Greg said.

Mike, Randy, Aaron and Tyler started preparing for the state championships in April.

"They all shoot and practice together every Saturday in Newman," Greg said.

Mike and Randy are following in their father's footsteps.

Greg's father-in-law introduced him to the sport in the 1980s.

"I started shooting at Turlock Sportsman Club in 1987," Greg said.

"They naturally took an interest in it."

Greg, Mike and Randy shoot in Waterford and Newman.

Mike, a 2004 Ceres High graduate, tied for fifth in the overall standings and was awarded a ribbon for having the second-highest score in the Senior-Novice class. He broke 194 targets out of 200.

"This is his fourth year competing," Greg said. "He's been the high junior for several years in the Valley Trap Winter League."

Mike turns 18 in September. He'll start competing in the adult class.

"He's definitely planning on continuing with it," Greg said.

Randy, 14, and Aaron, 15, are going to be sophomores at Ceres High School.

Tyler, 10, is going to be in the fifth grade at Caswell Elementary School

Randy, Aaron and Tyler are first-year competitors.

"The kids are interested in something else other than getting into trouble," Greg said. "If there's a shoot on Friday, Saturday or Sunday night, that's where they want to be."

The Scholastic Trap Program is a national program governed by the Amateur Trapshooting Association and the National Shooting Sports Foundation. - By DALE BUTLER

Staff Reporter of The Ceres (Calif.) Courier