Tri-city area Junior Olympic shooters prove mettle at nationals

Brian Witty/Courtesy photo<br>
From left, Joseph Witty, Cole Parrish and Colton Underwood at the Junior Olympic SCTP Nationals at Colorado Springs, Colorado, in late July.

Brian Witty/Courtesy photo<br> From left, Joseph Witty, Cole Parrish and Colton Underwood at the Junior Olympic SCTP Nationals at Colorado Springs, Colorado, in late July.

AT THE 2015 JUNIOR OLYMPIC NATIONAL SHOTGUN CHAMPIONSHIPS July 26-27 in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Joseph Witty of Prescott Valley finished 35th out of 93 contestants across three different age divisions.

Witty placed 12th in the J2 division of 15- to 17-year-olds in addition to posting a final score of 105 out of 125 total points in International Skeet.

He also went on to fare well at the Scholastic Clay Target Program's International National Championships July 29-30 in Colorado. Witty tallied a final score of 112 out of a possible 125 in International Skeet.

Joseph also took sixth place in the Senior Division and tied for seventh overall out of 81 shooters in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

He moved on to register a final score of 97 out of 150 in International Doubles Trap. He was 25th in the Senior Division and tied for 38th overall out of 66 shooters in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

What follows is a breakdown of the individual results for two of Witty's standout teammates as well as their team at the Scholastic Clay Target Nationals:

• Cole Parrish: In International Skeet, Parrish posted a final score of 75 out of possible 125. He finished 35th in the Senior Division and 57th overall out of the 81 shooters in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

In International Doubles Trap, Underwood finished with a final score of 106 out of 150.

• Colton Underwood: In International Skeet, Underwood recorded a final score of 73 out of a possible 125. He claimed 37th in the Senior Division and 60th overall out of the 81 shooters in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

In International Doubles Trap, Underwood had a final score of 106 out of 150. He was 16th in the Senior Division and tied for 21st overall out of 66 shooters in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

As an International Skeet squad, Witty, Parrish and Underwood finished with a total score of 260, putting them 10th overall out of all competitive squads in the Intermediate, Senior and Collegiate divisions.

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PRESCOTT LADYHAWKS 10-AND-UNDER girls' fast-pitch softball assistant coach/team manager Mike Tessman wanted to thank several people in the community for helping his team have a successful summer season in the Arizona Amateur Softball Association (ASA).

But, first, Tessman shared a short history of the squad.

At the beginning of the summer of 2014, Prescott did not have a 10U LadyHawks team.

Jose "Pepe" Bernal had a vision of creating a squad so that local girls in the 10U age group would have an opportunity to play competitive tournament softball. He told Tessman about his vision and, since they both have daughters in that age class, Tessman asked Bernal if he could be a part of making it happen. With Pepe's leadership, Tessman said, the program flourished.

This summer, the team's second year of operations, brought some coaching changes. At the end of July, because of personal reasons, Pepe stepped down as head coach. Bill Weber, a local businessman, took over the head-coaching duties. Jeff Nelson, another local businessman, began serving as an assistant coach and the official scorekeeper.

Jessica James became the pitching coach and JR Barringer served as a guest pitching coach on two occasions.

Recently, Kate Kinchen joined the coaching staff. Kinchen played all of her softball in Prescott and was on the Tri-City Prep softball team.

Until a sudden illness, Karen Black had been helping the girls with their hitting and had done "a superb job," Tessman said.

Jeff Frizzell, assistant softball coach at Yavapai College who operates Frizzell Professional Hitting, also worked with some of the players.

"His teaching technique has done wonders at the plate," Tessman added about Frizzell.

Tessman also thanked the players' parents, whose contributions on and off the field were instrumental in making the team happen. Jennie Jacobson, one of the 10U Ladyhawks' moms, even agreed to shoot photos for the team. He went on to thank the Prescott Yavapai Indian Tribe, which has helped the squad financially.

If this high level of support is any indication, the LadyHawks 10U program should last for a very long time and reach hundreds of young girls in the process.

To report an item for the Community Sports News column, send an email to dcook@prescottaz.com or call Doug at 928-445-3333, ext. 2039.