Former Arizona Game and Fish commissioner W. Hays Gilstrap, an instrumental figure in establishing Arizona's Scholastic Clay Target Program, was recently inducted into the National Sporting Clays Association Hall of Fame for his outstanding contributions to youth shooting sports programs.
Gilstrap was presented with the Hill-Adams Service Award at the 2006 National Sporting Clays Hall of Fame awards banquet last month. As a member of the Arizona Game and Fish Commission, Gilstrap was a key advocate for the commission's decision to hire a statewide shooting sports coordinator and to fund a youth shotgun-shooting program supported by volunteers.
Gilstrap moved to Arizona in 1968 with his wife, Suzanne. He served on the Arizona Game and Fish Commission from 1999-2005 and was chair in 2000 and 2005.
The Hill-Adams Service Award was established several years ago by the National Sporting Clays Association to honor two youth coaches, Brian Hill and Dave Adams, who were killed in an automobile accident while on their way to a competition. And while we're on the subject of youth shooters, a team from the East Valley participated in the first Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP) International Shotgun Championships.
The competition included team matches in the international versions of trap and skeet shooting, which are shot in the Olympics and at other world events.
Arizona teammates Correy Schultz and Hunter Williams of Gilbert joined Kyle Wandelear of Queen Creek to take third place in skeet. The team, which took the moniker "Red Mountain Heela Monsters," hit 236 out of 450 targets.
Scottsdale diver Julie Russell set a U.S. record in freediving during the 2006 U.S. Freediving National Championships Sept. 15-17 in Kona, Hawaii. She was also invited to be on the U.S. Freediving Team.
Russell, 32, set the record in Constant Ballast without Fins with a depth of 43 meters, or 141 feet. This discipline requires a diver to descend and ascend wearing a small amount of weight. The weight is used to aid the descent and must be brought back to the surface.
The previous record of 42 meters was set in October 2004.
Russell is an assistant manager at Aquatic Fitness Swim and Snorkel in Scottsdale and has been swimming competitively since she was 6 years old.
The U.S. team will compete next at the fifth AIDA World Championships in Egypt in December.
The Gilbert Community Services Recreation Division recently announced the winners of its 2006 Fall Wrestling League Pursuing Victory With Honor Sportsmanship Awards.
Six-year-old Trevor Ortega was the recipient representing the age group of 5 years old through second grade, and Samuel Tovar, 9, was selected from the third-through-sixth-grade division.
Both wrestlers were chosen by coaches for their demonstration of outstanding character and observation of the six pillars of trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship.