Beau Keagle Can Shoot With the Nation's Best

 

Beau Keagle - is the sixth place placewinner

by Jeff Olsen

In what has been a very successful stretch, the Roseau High School Clay Target Team - national champs in 2019 and third in the nation in 2021 - recently had their highest individual placewinner.

Graduating senior Beau Keagle earned sixth place honors in the USA Target League National Championships in Mason, Michigan, on July 8-10.

"Beau shot a 198 out 200 over two days in the individual competition," said head coach Troy Weiland.

Beau shot a 98 his first day and then he finished off his high school career with his first ever 100 score in competition.

"There was kind of a monkey on his back trying to get that 100 in competition. It was right down to his last 100 rounds of his high school career," said Weiland.

And Beau aced it!

He became the highest individual placewinner ever for Roseau.

"He shot there in 2018, 2019, and 2021 and came home with hardware every year," he said, impressed with the young man and his teammates - Henry Finney (195), Adam Weiland (189), Tate Dale (93 - only shot the qualifier), and Guilford Finney (91 - also shot only the qualifier).


"In 2019, our team won the national tournament. There was no tournament in 2020 because of Covid. Last year, we took third nationally as a team."

This year, they were 61st.

"We have a young team," he said, explaining that Friday was the team qualifier.

There were 230 teams that shot, and only 80 advanced to the team championship on Sunday.

Roseau was one of them.

"On Friday, we were tenth. We shot 100 rounds per man. The best score would be 500. I think we had 483."

Saturday was the qualifier for Sunday's individual championship.

"Overall, Beau was sixth out of more than 1,800 in the individual competition," said Troy, adding that Beau received a trophy and a medal.

"He's a good shot and he's dedicated. Without a doubt, he shoots more rounds than anyone else every season."

Beau is a low-key young man and modest about placing sixth nationally against the very best high school clay target shooters.

"It's hard to explain, but it felt pretty good," he said last week.

Hitting the perfect 100 for the first time ever in competition is now a lasting memory.

"If the confidence isn't there, the nerves can really get to you. You have to be confident if you're going to be among the top shooters."

He had no complaints about the weather, which he described as good all three days.

"The thing that affected me the most was my focus."

He focused just fine.

On Saturday, Beau had shot 98 and on Sunday he shot 100.

"Next year, I will be shooting with the Amateur Trapshooting Association. It's like the high school thing, but everybody can shoot in it."

His plans are to attend Hibbing Community College to study electrical maintenance.

He enjoys the level of competitiveness in clay target shooting and what it takes to be on top.

Then, he mentioned his special clay target .12 gauge Zoli shotgun.

What did it cost?

"I think they're about ten grand. I've had this one for two years," he said, explaining that his stepdad, Darren Hedlund, got a good deal on it.

"Everything lined up. I'll have it for the rest of my life."

The Italian shotgun could be considered the Ferrari of shotguns.

Shoot right-handed?

"I'm a lefty. I started off shooting right-handed and then my eye dominance changed, and they switched me to left-handed in seventh grade."

Is it tougher?

"It depends on the shot."

He was asked how often he cleans his Zoli shotgun.

"After every competition," he said, and laughed when it was suggested not to let it lie around unattended.

It just might develop legs and disappear.

Tip of the Hat

Coach Weiland singled out his assistant coaches - Darren Hedlund, Chad Dale, and Eric Finney - for another fine season.

 

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