Del Oro trap shooters wrap up state series titles

By: Mike Ray, Loomis News Sports Editor
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There?s no question that Del Oro High?s football, basketball, wrestling and softball teams - just to name a few - have made a habit of grabbing the headlines. But that could be changing thanks to a sport that doesn?t even use a ball. For the second straight year, the trap shooting teams at Del Oro pulled off a banner season with both the school?s varsity and JV squads earning state level honors. ?This is one of the best high school trap teams that I can remember,? said Del Oro coach Fred Jenson. ?We had excellent shooters and a good coaching staff and they both pulled together.? Del Oro?s varsity team of Thomas Mitchell, Brad Laughridge, Lucas Boxwell, Cody Hill and Paul Dubanski took first place in all six CYSSA Series Shoots this season. ?It was an incredible feat,? said Jenson. They?ve now won the CYSSA varsity state series Championship two years in a row.? Not to be outdone, the JV team won five of the six CYSSA Series Shoots and won the Stockton State Shoot. The JV was lead by Eric Haynes, Kyle Reilly, Zach Brandt, Brandon Gibson, Zack Hare, Rusty Kruger and Clay Thomas. ?The JVs have now won the state series championship three years in a row,? said Jenson. ?That?s quite an accomplishment.? Jenson deferred much of the credit for the Golden Eagles? success to the shooters and their parents. ?Our team had great parental support,? said Jenson. ?There is just something about Del Oro families.? Jenson noted that the teams also received excellent support from Del Oros? teachers and staff. ?From our school sponsor, coach Mike Pahl all the way to Principal Dan Gayaldo,? Jenson added. ?We have had nothing but encouraging words.? Despite being the head coach, Jenson also voiced that the Del Oro success couldn?t have been accomplished without the job done by his assistant coaches Phil Murphy, Larry Gibson and Buddy Jenson. Murphy just joined the Del Oro staff and used his 40 plus years of competitive shooting knowledge to fine tune the team. Gibson was the newest addition to the staff, who took several shooters under his wing, while Buddy Jenson, (head coach for the Auburn Gold Miners) is one of the finest young coaches in Northern California. Jeff Pasquetti, a former Del Oro shooter, also was quietly very influential on some of the top shooters on this year?s squad,? Fred Jenson noted. ?He did a great job.? Five of Del oro?s varsity shooters - Mitchell, Laughridge, Hill, Boxwell and Rusty Kruger - graduated in June. ?They?re some of the top shooters and more importantly some of the greatest people I have ever had the privilege of coaching,? said Jenson. ?They will be missed.? As a side-note, Laughridge reported for basic training in the U.S. Army this week. Fred Jenson also wanted to thank the sponsors who made this season possible. They include the NRA, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Paradise Signs, River City Gun Exchange, Auburn Trap Club and Coon Creek Trap Club. ?I?ve coached seven year now,? said Fred Jenson. ?The support we received this year was most rewarding.?