Aiming Olympians Make a Blast in Bismarck - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Aiming Olympians Make a Blast in Bismarck

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Alana Townsend was nine years old the first time she pulled the trigger.

"I picked it up right away," said Townsend, a member of the NDSU Marksmanship Team. "It was super easy for me and I want it to be easy for other people."

Townsend was one of four NDSU team members to introduce and demonstrate the sport of bulls-eye  pistol shooting at the Bismarck-Mandan Rifle and Pistol Association's Indoor Range last night. the team's coach is also the assistant coach for the US Olympic shooting team, and says that spreading the word is important. 

"Shooting is the third most popular Olympic sport if you go by number of countries that participate in it," said Eric Pueppke. "A lot of people don't know about it."

It was a ladies only clinic and a registration class was held before hand for people who needed it. Townsend says she hopes to get other women fired up about it.

"I've always had a lot of different comments about being a female pistol athlete but that's never stopped me and it's gotten me very far just following my passion," said Townsend. 

And far is right, since making the Junior Olympics Shooting Team at 16, Townsend has traveled all over the country and to Europe for matches. And Pueppke says that it's not all about the competition.

"It's a great sport, it's not hard as they may think, it's very popular and there's so much opportunity to shoot matches, to meet people. Myself, I've met people from all around the US it's kind of like a big family," said Pueppke. 

Now shooting is a Summer Olympics Game, so you won't see any in Sochi. But Pueppke said he is looking forward to traveling to Rio De Janeiro in 2016.

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