Record group competes in annual Amite skeet shoot _lowres

Photo provided by Samuel C. Hyde Jr. -- Winners in the 13th annual Sam Hyde Sr. Youth Skeet Shoot, from left, are Senior Division champion Andrew Hyde, Junior Division runner-up Brandon Leyrer, Senior Division runner up Clay Hyde, Novice Division champion Brad Frieze, and Junior Division champion Christy Cornwell.

Thirty-eight shooters competed in the 13th annual Sam Hyde Sr. Youth Skeet Shoot at the Skeet Club in Amite on April 16.

It was the largest group to compete in the annual event, organizer Samuel C. Hyde Jr. said in a news release.

The Novice Division, designed for first-time shooters, included some of the youngest and oldest competitors. In a close competition decided by one point, Brad Frieze, of Baton Rouge, was the winner.

The Junior Division included some familiar faces along with some first-time participants, the release said. For the first time in the event’s history, every participant in the Junior Division scored in double digits. In the end, 2015 Junior Division champ Christy Cornwell fended off a tough challenge from runner-up Brandon Leyrer to repeat as Junior Division champion.

The Senior Division had a crowded field of nearly 30 participants and included several veterans of competition skeet shooting, along with some regulars to the shoot who always ratchet up the skill level, the release said.

Previous medalists, including Dillon Vining, Patrick Quin and Keaton Biggs remained in the hunt through the early shooting but as the final stations were reached, three shooters broke from the pack. Last year’s Senior Division champ Clay Hyde maintained a perfect score through the first five shooting stations only to be matched station-for-station by veteran shooter Tyler Hatrel. All the while, the youngest shooter in the Senior Division, Andrew Hyde, was quietly compiling a near perfect score of his own. When Clay Hyde and Hatrel dropped two and three targets respectively at the challenging sixth station, Andrew Hyde took the lead and maintained it through the final two stations to become the 2016 Senior Division champion, hitting 22 of 25 targets. Older brother Clay Hyde held onto second place

The Youth Shoot is hosted by the Florida Parishes Skeet and Conservation Association, whose mission is to promote gun safety and educate the public in competitive skeet shooting, the release said.

The event is held each year on the third Saturday in April and participants and their families are treated to a picnic lunch and an awards ceremony following the shoot.