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Carey qualifies for $50,000 Grand American event

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By Brandon Mattingly

 

Washington County native Stephanie Carey has already competed in nationally-recognized events as a member of the University of Kentucky shotgun team, but later this month she’ll take part in the biggest competition of her life, and this time it’s as an individual.

Carey recently competed in a five-event trap shooting handicap event that hosted 926 shooters, and none posted a higher score than Carey, who qualified for the Amateur Trapshooting Association’s 113th Grand American World Trap Shooting Championship at the World Shooting and Recreational Complex in Sparta, Ill. on Saturday. She said it’s undoubtedly the top accomplishment of her trap shooting career, as she had to be nearly flawless to top the field.

“Oh, this is No. 1,” she said. “It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever won and I just couldn’t believe it. I had to be in a shoot-off with two guys and ended up having to shoot a score of 100 to settle it.”

Carey was given the choice to compete in the $100,000 Grand Challenge, or the $50,000 Ladies’ Grand Challenge, and she elected to compete in the ladies’ event, which gets underway at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

Carey said she set the tone of her day by posting scores of 98 and 99 in her first two events, before eventually prevailing in the shoot-off.

Now she’s looking ahead to this weekend, and has her eye on topping the 10-woman field for the $50,000 cash prize.

“It would mean everything to me to actually win it,” she said of the upcoming event. “I’ve got some rent and some student loans that need to be paid for.”