North Ridgeville high school shooting club say it's safest sport - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

North Ridgeville high school shooting club say it's safest sport with zero injuries

NORTH RIDGEVILLE, OH --Getting hurt while playing a sport has always been just part of playing the game, but one of the fastest growing high school sports in the country is bucking that trend -- trap shooting.

High school trap started in Minnesota in 2001.


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It is now in 28 states including Ohio.

According to USA High School Clay Target League, they have had zero reported injuries.

“It’s pretty strange,” said Brian O’Grady, whose daughter is on the North Ridgeville team. “They’ve always been in other sports, baseball, soccer, you know. It’s always been a twisted ankle or a concussion or some kind of injury.”

North Ridgeville Junior Jake Smithhisler has played it all -- football, baseball, basketball and field hockey.

After getting a series of injuries along the way, the trap team is a welcome change of pace.

“It’s pretty nice not to have to worry about anything. You don’t have to recover after workouts or anything,” he said. 

The firearms never go to the school.

Matches are usually shot on the weekends, with occasional make ups during the week. In those cases, the students go home to get their gear before going to the range.

Still, some might feel kids and firearms do not mix.

These students do not agree.

“We’re all high schoolers here. We’re responsible enough now to be able to learn and know how to handle a gun,” said North Ridgeville senior Graicen Riley. “We’re all out there driving cars, it’s another responsibility that we’re mature enough to take on.”

Riley is one of four girls on the team. Trap, like many shooting sports, does not need to be broken down to teams for men and women.

They all compete against each other.

Trap in Ohio is a club sport, not yet recognized by the Ohio High School Athletic Association.

In the meantime, the sport is growing.

North Ridgeville’s is one of 10 teams in Ohio.

In only their second year they’ve gone from 20 shooters to more than 30. They’re the only team in the Cleveland area, but students at other schools have reached out to them about getting a team started at their school.

The USA High School Clay Target League would love to have more schools on board for 2019, but first there are state titles and a national championship for 2018 to settle first.

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