BOULDER JUNCTION - Most sports teams face their competition in person, that's not always the case for trap shooting teams. But on Monday, two Northwoods school trap teams got to meet up in person for some friendly rivalry, and to share their love of the sport.
"I think the best thing about this sport is that it's really a level playing field," said Northland Pines Trap Coach Tim Lehman.
It's a level playing field that's growing.
"We were the only team north of Wausau and Antigo six years ago when we started," said Lehman, "Now I've lost track of how many teams there are."
"This is the fastest growing high school sport in the state of Wisconsin," said Lakeland Union Trap Coach Tom Oestreich.
That growth was easy to see Monday in Boulder Junction as the Northland Pines and Lakeland Union Trap Teams competed in a head-to-head competition as a part of the Great Northern Conference.
"It's amazing actually, I didn't think it was going to be as big [in the Northwoods], but there's actually a lot of kids," said Selena Grundy, a freshman Lakeland Union trap shooter.
Grundy recently moved to the Northwoods from Milwaukee. She's been trap shooting for years.
"I love that we get to travel different places like this and we meet a lot of new people," said Grundy.
Head-to-head competitions not only allow teams to meet new people, but to learn new methods.
"It shows you how their style of shooting is, trying new arm techniques in holding the gun, seeing if that improves you at all," said freshman Northland Pines trap shooter Jeremiah Poetcl.
The coaches say the sport goes beyond teaching technique.
"The safety foremost and then just the competition and etiquette that goes along with shooting trap," said Oestreich.
"Teaches a lot of great discipline," said Lehman.
But those lessons wouldn't be possible without the kids' passion for the sport. A passion for trap shooting that many students would like to share with others.
"It is a lot of fun. It's not easy, and it takes a lot of practice, but they should really try it because there's a lot of opportunity," said Grundy.