GREENSBORO, Ga. — Reynolds Lake Oconee is pleased to announce that Eatonton local and Sandy Creek Sporting Grounds Chief Instructor Jasper Copelan was named the State Champion of the 2020 Georgia State Sporting Clays Championship on Sunday, June 21 at the Meadows Gun Club in Forsyth, Ga.
Jasper, 21, earned a score of 92 on Saturday and 97 on Sunday for a total score of 189 points at the two-day tournament. Having won several tournaments as a Junior, and now competing in the 21 and over division, he out-shot 498 competitors, earning the title of high overall shooter for Georgia residents.
A competitive shooter since age nine, Jasper is no stranger to the nerves and excitement of competing. Clay target shooting is as much of a mind game as it is a game of skill, if not more so.
“At any shoot, I feel that I am shooting against myself, rather than my competitors,” says Jasper. “I wasn’t really nervous on that last stretch on Sunday afternoon, I was just very focused on finishing the round strong.”
He would like to thank his family, coach and mentor Dr. Sammy McFaddin, and sponsors, including Promatic USA, 3 Dragons LLC, and Marlette Fine Arms. He is also thankful for the overwhelming support of Reynolds Lake Oconee and the Sandy Creek Sporting Grounds.
“I am very fortunate to have a great team of coworkers that support me, especially Jeff Lorenzini and Justin Jones who help me improve my shooting every day,” says Jasper. “I am so lucky to work here and be involved in shooting every day. It doesn’t even seem like work!”
Jasper’s biggest supporter, however, was competing right next to him, and has recently joined him on staff at the Sandy Creek Sporting Grounds. His brother, Aaron Copelan, 19, come in 12th overall in the main shooting event for Georgia residents, and placed 3rd in the Junior Category for ages 21 and younger.
“My brother is my best friend, and I am so fortunate to shoot with him at tournaments,” says Copelan. “He keeps me calm when the pressure is really on, and makes it feel like we are just out practicing.”
“We are all very proud of Jasper and Aaron,” says Sandy Creek Sporting Grounds Director Justin Jones. “They are both excellent additions to our team, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for them.”