Russian wins men’s double trap

Vasiliy Mosin of Russia won the men’s double trap Monday at the Hill Country Shooting Sports Center during the World Cup Shooting Championships.

Mosin finished with a 145 out of 150 in the qualifying rounds, then shot a 44 in the final for a 189 total score.

Hakan Dahlby of Sweden took the silver medal after beating Richard Faulds of Great Britain in a shoot-off. Dahlby finished with a 139 qualifying score and a 46 in the final, whereas Faulds hit a 137 qualifying and a 48 in the final. Faulds took third.

The U.S.’s top shooter was 20-year-old Pfc. Josh Richmond of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit. Richmond of Hillsgrove, Penn., finished in eighth place with a 135 qualifying score, just one point out of the final.

This is one of those matches where I can’t necessarily be disappointed in my performance, but I am not excited about it either, Richmond said. Three rounds of 45 is a pretty consistent day of shooting. I really wouldn’t have changed anything about today, except for maybe where I placed.

Other U.S. finishers were two-time Olympian Glenn Eller of Houston, who finished 18th, and Olympic Training Center resident athlete Jeff Holguin of Colorado Springs, Colo., who claimed 20th.

Today marks official training day for men’s and women’s trap shooting. The women’s event will finish up on Wednesday, while the men’s trap final will round out the World Cup schedule of events on Thursday.

Women’s Skeet

Connie Smotek of Lyons won the women’s skeet shooting competition on Sunday.

In front of her home-state crowd, Smotek shot a 91 total score to win the first Shotgun event of the World Cup.

It was very neat to win in front of a local crowd, Smotek said. This is the first international match that my husband has seen me shoot, and the first international match that my parents have seen me shoot since the 92 Olympics. The fact that I won made it just that much more special.

Smotek actually found herself in a tie after she shot the 100 target course. Qualifying with a 68 and a hitting a 23 in the final, she ended up in a tie with Russia’s Svetlana Demina for first place. Smotek held in there, and after the Demina missed her fourth target, she was finally named the champion. Danka Bartekova of Slovakia finished in third with a 67 qualifying score and a 23 in the finals.

It just goes to show that you can’t give up, Smotek said. I didn’t get a stellar start on my first round, but I just kept myself focused on what I needed to do to win. It’s not over until the last shot is fired, and the competition today proved that.

The other U.S. women’s skeet shooters, Haley Dunn of Eddyville, Iowa, and Brandie Neal of Spencer, Ind., finished eighth and 25th, respectively, in leading the U.S. women’s team to a skeet championship.

In men’s skeet action, 16-year-old shooting phenom Vincent Hancock of Eatonton, Ga., is currently sitting in a good position to medal with a 49 out of 50.

Men’s Skeet

Ennio Falco of Italy won the men’s skeet event Sunday.

Falco finished with a total score of 146 after qualifying with a 121 and running 25-straight in the final. Norway’s Tore Brovold, Denmark’s Michael Nielsen and Anders Golding, and Hancock all finished with a 120 qualifying score to head into the final in a four-way tie for second. In the end, it was Brovold and Nielsen who won a spot on the medal stand, by shooting 25 in the final and then winning the shoot-off against Golding who also shot a 25 out of 25. Hancock finished with a 144 total score, shooting a 24 in the final.

That last round I shot completely took away my cushion, Hancock said, referring to his last qualifying round of 22. And it was amazing to see so many 25s fired in the final. I really didn’t expect that here, at this range.

Falco may have found his redemption with this win-beating Hancock on his home soil. But even though the young Hancock beat Falco at the World Championships in Lonato, Italy, last year, Hancock feels that he is still one behind.

I feel he is one up on me, Hancock said. He beat me at the World Cup in Rome, and I beat him in Lonato, but with this win, he is ahead. I won’t be going to any more World Cups this year, but I will definitely be gunning for him next year at the World Clay Target Championships.

Hancock won’t have the hectic international travel schedule he did last year because he will be attending boot camp this summer. During his senior year, next fall, he plans on joining the Army Reserves, and as soon as he graduates he looks to join the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit at Fort Benning, Ga.

I’ll get my college tuition paid for, plus I’ll get to spend as much time shooting as humanly possible, Hancock added. It will be just what I need to I prepare for the Olympic Games.

The other U.S. men’s skeet shooters competing in this World Cup, Sgt. First Class Shawn Dulohery of the USAMU, and Olympic Training Center resident athlete Kent Vail of Colorado Springs, Colo., finished 17th and 45th, respectively.

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