When it comes to skeet shooting, one of the most accurate competitors in the country resides in Lafayette and he’s only 15-years-old.
Jacob Moore, a student at John Paul the Great Academy, was introduced to firearms at a young age.
“He started with shotguns at age 6 when he went duck hunting with us,” his father, Brandon Moore said. “We recognized early on that he had great hand-eye coordination.”
It didn't take long for the adults to realize that they had a prodigy on their hands.
“My dad's friend (David Hebert) first introduced me to skeet,” Jacob said. “I tried it out and just loved it from the beginning.
Jacob began his competitive career with a 20-gauge shotgun in 4-H competitions and then moved onto a bigger stage at National Skeet Shooting Association tournaments.
“The first year in 4-H I didn't even make it to the state competition,” Jacob said. “But I started shooting more and progressing.”
After placing third overall in state at a 4-H-sanctioned event, Moore's star began to rise.
The Louisiana Skeet Shooting Association named him Rookie of the Year for 2017 among all age groups, including adult shooters.
“I had the highest overall score of the rookies,” Jacob said. “It's the highest percentage of targets hit.”
“That helped him realize he had a special gift,” his father said.
The Moores travel to Kaplan as many as five times a week to practice at Hebert's range and have traveled to 12 different competitions this year.
“I love shooting and the challenge of hitting the targets. It's pretty much all I do.” Jacob said.
In 2018, Jacob made an even bigger splash nationally.
“The big highlight that year was when I was named first-team All-American for the sub-junior age group,” he said. “It’s the top seven shooters from the 14-and-under age division.”
At the World Championships in San Antonio, Jacob finished first in the 28-gauge and second overall.
He moved up an age division this year but that didn't slow him down. In Moore's first season in the Junior Division, he finished second in the 28-gauge and third in the .410 at the world championships in North Carolina.
Moore also won first overall at the prestigious Briley Louisiana Open, which draws competitors from across the country.
Most recently, he was the overall junior champion at the National Skeet Shooting Association Zone 6 Competition, which encompasses Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana.
Despite being an elite, nationally-recognized shooter, Jacob is an unassuming young man with simple goals.
“I just want to hit more ducks in the duck blind,” he said.