Girls gun their way to glory

20:58, Nov 27 2012
Alysha Bell and Brittany Pilcher
TOP SHOTS: Timaru’s Brittany Pilcher, left, and Alysha Bell both made New Zealand skeet teams after fine performances at the nationals.

Craighead's Alysha Bell and Brittany Pilcher have again impressed with a shotgun to make New Zealand skeet teams.

They competed at the national championships in Hamilton during the weekend.

Bell shot 94 from 100 targets and elected to shoot for the junior team while Pilcher scored 87 and made the women's team of six.

alysha bell
Shooter Alysha Bell

Their coach, Warren Darling, from the Timaru Clay Target Club, was just one shot away from being in the open New Zealand team, as was Studholme's Cameron Rooney.

Bell, 17, was also the Killwell Trophy match junior high overall champion.

She was also placed third in the B-grade at the national tournament, scoring a personal best to lift her average enough to qualify for A-grade for the first time. Bell's promotion means at competitions she will face New Zealand's top women including Commonwealth Games representative Natalie Rooney, her inspiration to take up the sport.


brittany pilcher
Shooter Brittany Pilcher

Skeet shooters attempt to break clay discs which are automatically flung into the air from two fixed spots, at high speed from a variety of angles, while the shooters progress through eight stations.

For Bell it was a great way to finish her fifth and final year at Craighead, having joined the shooting team in Year 9.

Pilcher has also had an impressive year having earlier taking out a couple of New Zealand titles in "down the line" single barrel and distance by handicap.

She still has another year at school and will be a key member of the Craighead team.

Pilcher prefers skeet while Bell's favourite discipline is "down the line'.

The Timaru Herald