Local free-throw shooters qualify for state competition

Myra Simmons, Makayla Long take top honors at Elks ‘Hoop Shoot’ competition

Myra Simmons, in the 12-to-13 age group, and Makayla Long, in the 10-to-11 group, are headed to the state competition in Salida on Feb. 22. Enlargephoto

Courtesy photo

Myra Simmons, in the 12-to-13 age group, and Makayla Long, in the 10-to-11 group, are headed to the state competition in Salida on Feb. 22.

After sinking more than their fair share of free throws at the Colorado West District Elks “Hoop Shoot” Competition, local residents Makayla Long and Myra Simmons are moving on to state.

Competing in the 10-to-11-year-old age division, Long earned a first-place trophy after sinking 16 of her 25 free throws and earning the High Point Award for girls.

Also shooting well, Simmons sunk 14 or her 25 free-throw attempts to take first place in the 12-to-13-year-old age division.

By virtue of their strong shooting performances, both Simmons and Long will move onto the state competition, which will be held in Salida on Feb. 22.

Other local shooters competing in the District Hoop Shoot competition included Tyrell Benally, Teagan Whiteskunk and Dorian Hillard.

Benally connected on 17 of 25 free-throw attempts to place second in the 10-to-11- year-old age division, while Whiteskunk hit 16 of his 25 attempts to place second in the 12-to-13-year-old age division.

Helping to make this year’s district event possible were Cortez Hoop Shoot co-directors Gini Olson and Fred DeWitt; Rick Presnell; representatives from the Durango Elks Lodge; and 10 student athletes from Fort Lewis College who volunteered their time.