Pella Chronicle

CNHI/Southeast Iowa

April 4, 2013

Oskaloosa shooter earns honor at tournament

OSKALOOSA — He’s a real straight shooter.

Ryan Smithart, 20, of Oskaloosa, recently earned the designation of National Champion International Skeet Men’s Division at the USA Shooting 2013 ACUI National Clay Target Championship held this past week in San Antonio, Texas.

“I wasn’t even sure I had won until I turned around and heard my fan section cheering,” said Smithart. “That was pretty cool.”

The collegiate-level competition included seven different events, said Smithart.

With this tournament, Smithart also made it onto the USA Shooting National Junior Team, he said, which has been a goal of his for quite some time.

Although he’s been familiar with firearms for most of his life, Smithart said things really got going back when he was in the eighth grade. This was when the Oskaloosa Shooting Team was first getting going, he explained.

“It was always something that I enjoyed doing,” said Smithart, adding that the fact that he’s gotten better at the sport has been encouraging.

Smithart is currently a student at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo., and is on a competitive shooting scholarship there, said Smithart’s father, Larry Gay.

“They just finished winning their tenth national collegiate championship in a row,” said Gay.

This is a real record, said Smithart.

“In fact, we’re going to be in the Guinness Book of World Records for that,” Smithart said.

Given his level of experience, the fact that Smithart has come this far in the sport is something worth recognizing, noted Gay, who also credited Smithart’s family for encouraging him along the way. The local community has also helped Smithart, noted Gay.

For those who may not know much about the sport of competitive shooting, it is gaining in popularity. Smithart said he’s seen growth in the sport since he began with it.

“I know when we started out when I was in eighth grade there was I think eight kids on the team and we’ve grown to upwards around 60 now,” said Smithart. “As far as the high school goes in the community, it’s grown. I believe its grown over the country quite largely, too.”

Gay, who coaches the Oskaloosa Shooting Team, agreed that the sport is on the rise.

Smithart agreed that being on a shooting team is a lot like being on any other sports team in that you show appreciation when your teammates do well.

Gay and Smithart said  that staying away from caffeine, eating properly and getting enough sleep are all key factors in competitive shooting.

“It’s extremely important because of the blood flow to the eyes,” Gay explained. “For instance, let’s say you eat a big meal just right before you shoot. It slows your movement down.

The blood from your head starts to help digest food in your stomach, which effects your eyes.”

Smithart said it’s his goal to continue to improve with every tournament he participates in from here on out.

1
Text Only
CNHI/Southeast Iowa
  • 20140729-AMX-GIVHAN292.jpg Spanx stretches into new territory with jeans, but promised magic is elusive

    The Spanx empire of stomach-flattening, thigh-slimming, jiggle-reducing foundation garments has expanded to include what the brand promises is the mother of all body-shaping miracles: Spanx jeans.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Medical marijuana opponents' most powerful argument is at odds with a mountain of research

    Opponents of marijuana legalization are rapidly losing the battle for hearts and minds. Simply put, the public understands that however you measure the consequences of marijuana use, the drug is significantly less harmful to users and society than tobacco or alcohol.

    July 29, 2014

  • linda-ronstadt.jpg Obama had crush on First Lady of Rock

    Linda Ronstadt remained composed as she walked up to claim her National Medal of Arts at a White House ceremony Monday afternoon.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can black women have it all?

    In a powerful new essay for the National Journal, my friend Michel Martin makes a compelling case for why we need to continue the having-it-all conversation.

    July 29, 2014

  • 0729 OTT Picture veteran -T -M Veteran finally receives his medals OTTUMWA — A World War II injury may have saved the life of a U.S. Coast Guardsman from Iowa, but he lost friends and a box of military awards. Francis Hardy Harbour was born on Dec.16, 1919, in Drakesville. He joined the Coast Guard in 1941 as a mach

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dangerous Darkies Logo.png Redskins not the only nickname to cause a stir

    Daniel Snyder has come under fire for refusing to change the mascot of his NFL team, the Washington Redskins. The Redskins, however, are far from being the only controversial mascot in sports history.  Here is a sampling of athletic teams from all areas of the sports world that were outside the norm.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • 'Rebel' mascot rising from the dead

    Students and alumni from a Richmond, Va.-area high school are seeking to revive the school's historic mascot, a Confederate soldier known as the "Rebel Man," spurring debate about the appropriateness of public school connections to the Civil War and its icons.

    July 28, 2014

  • Fast food comes to standstill in China

    The shortage of meat is the result of China's latest food scandal, in which a Shanghai supplier allegedly tackled the problem of expired meat by putting it in new packaging and shipping it to fast-food restaurants around the country

    July 28, 2014

  • wd saturday tobias .jpg Stranger’s generosity stuns Ohio veteran

    Vietnam War veteran David A. Tobias was overwhelmed recently when a fellow customer at an OfficeMax store near Ashtabula, Ohio paid for a computer he was purchasing.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 1.33.11 PM.png VIDEO: High-dive accident caught on tape

    A woman at a water park in Idaho leaped off a 22-foot high dive platform, then tried to pull herself back up with frightening results. Fortunately, she escaped with only a cut to her finger.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

Features
Facebook
AP Video
US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Obituaries