Area 5 Steel Challenge Championship

Thanks to John Holbrook for the awesome picture! His site is

Earlier this year, we went to the Georgia state match as our “ice breaker” match of the year. The pandemic either canceled or postponed matches, so now we have our second ice breaker match! Area 5 was not only extremely fun, but I shot a few personal bests too! Before the match, I was already in good spirits because I found out some good news: I had an honorable mention for a high school writing contest I participated in. This is exciting to me because I took the chance of submitting my favorite short story to see what it could do.

For my first time in Indiana, I had a great time! Not going to lie, on the way to Indiana, I felt like I was in an extended version of North Texas going by all the fields. We made it to the match area early Friday morning. Friday afternoon, I shot PCCO and PCCI. That was my second time shooting our JP at a major match, so I was trying to see how many seconds I could take off of my total time. In the end, I took 5.54 seconds off PCCO and 8.11 seconds off PCCI! Couldn’t have gone better! Another thing that made me happy during this match was I shot stages I haven’t seen since March.

Saturday morning, I shot RFPO and RFPI. I tried not to push too much, but I only managed that in a few stages. Still, I ended up taking 0.16 seconds off my best time in RFPO and 5.56 seconds off my best time in RFPI! Although I wish I would have shot better on a few stages, I am happy with how I ended.

Saturday afternoon, I shot Production! Phew! Same as my PCC, this was my second time shooting Production at a major match. I shot a 193.65 in Production at the Georgia state match. At this match, I shot a 164.66; I lost 28.99 seconds! I am proud of myself for how I could regain composure during most of the times I started getting too fast for myself. Overall, I figured a lot out during this match! One of these lessons is that at the next match, I need to do what I wanted to do at this match: one for one while being sure to squeeze the trigger. Getting excited definitely hurt me while shooting my Glock, but it happens!

Now to Sunday! I shot my two favorite divisions: RFRO and RFRI. Before I get into that, I will say that I am starting to love shooting Production more than or equal to my Rimfire Rifles. I may still have some trouble with Production, but I love it nonetheless. With my rifles, I shot around my best times on most of the stages, but I now know which stages fell behind during the time of no matches. Also, I shot better with Open Rifle than I did Iron Rifle! That hasn’t happened since Alabama State last year and the difference was .3 seconds. I still had a great time shooting my rifles, so it wasn’t a loss!

Next, I will talk about my prematch/match thoughts. Before this match, I was worried. It had been a while since I shot several of the stages or I shot them once since Georgia. I tried not to let it bother me too much. When I made it to the shooting box, my stomach was twisted and I felt nauseous. After taking a deep breath, I usually felt better. For some stages, I had more confidence than others. For other stages, I didn’t push enough in an attempt to not push too hard, so I didn’t do as good as I wanted. The one thing this match break didn’t falter in me was my excitement to see friends! It seems that I forgot how much I loved matches during the break, but I had a full reminder right before and during the match. I still feel the excitement of the match!

At this match, I shot 30 personal bests out of the 7 divisions I shot. For the Steel Challenge Top 20 lists, this match allowed me to be in 8th for GM PCCI, 2nd for Master PCCO, 13th for Master RFPO, and 8th for GM RFRI!

Finishing times and places:

RFRO overall time and finish: 13th with 70.23
RFRO Division: 7th out of 79
RFRO Lady Category: 2nd out of 15
RFRO Junior Category: 3rd out of 10

RFRI overall time and finish: 14th with 71.34
RFRI Division: 3rd out of 38
RFRI Lady Category: 1st out of 8
RFRI Junior Category: 1st out of 7

RFPO overall time and finish: 52nd and 83.05
RFPO Division: 9th out of 64
RFPO Lady Category: 3rd out of 13
RFPO Junior Category: 4th out of 10

RFPI overall time and finish: 70th and 86.06
RFPI Division: 2nd out of 32
RFPI Lady Category: 1st out of 4
RFPI Junior Category: 1st out of 4

PCCO overall time and finish: 31st and 76.08
PCCO Division: 8th out of 57
PCCO Lady Category: 2nd out of 11
PCCO Junior Category: 3rd out of 9

PCCI overall time and finish: 30th and 75.96
PCCI Division: 2nd out of 15
PCCI Lady Category: 1st out of 4
PCCI Junior Category: 1st out of 3

PROD overall time and finish: 327th and 164.66

This match was very well ran. Alongside the hospitality of the range, the ROs were enjoyable! They knew what they were doing and they did their job well. Steve Wright was the Match Director who put on this great match!

We also went to a restaurant for the first time since Georgia! Since everything has been going on, I have wanted to see what restaurants looked like with my own eyes. It was very interesting to see all the spaced tape, blocked tables, and employees with masks.

I had a great time seeing friends for the first time in months too! Honestly, I was kind of worried that I would be nervous to talk to everyone after not seeing them for so long, but I actually did pretty good. There were some moments where I was surprisingly talkative! I can’t wait to see everyone soon!

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Steel Target Paint
Hunters HD Gold
Vortex Optics
JP Enterprises
GT Targets

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