When it comes to USPSA in my neck of the woods, there are only two realistic options. You can shoot at Lower Providence or Southern Chester. Both clubs have their own style and host matches that are a lot of fun. When it was time to nail down a location for the 2013 USPSA Mid Atlantic Sectional Championship, I was thrilled that it was going to be held at Lower Providence (Last year it was held in New Jersey and even the thought of shooting a gun in New Jersey scares the bejesus out of me).
I’ve been shooting regularly at Lower Providence for the past two years. In that time I’ve gotten to know the people that make matches a reality, all of which are good people. In fact, I like the club and people so much that I volunteer to help as often as I can. Stages are always fun and challenging, even the mind boggling memory stages.
I knew before the very first stage was announced that Lower Providence was going to put on one hell of a match. Not only did the club produce some great stages, everything was done in a Star Trek theme and beautifully tied together in the match booklet, complete with storyline.
I was happy to volunteer my time and act as Match Staff. This allowed me to shoot on Friday with the other volunteers. I’ve shot with everyone in my squad prior, which helped ease the worries of shooting my first major match. Things were a little more laid back, since we didn’t have a tight timeframe to stick to, and I had a great time.
In terms of performance, I did fairly well with the exception of one monumental, bonehead mistake that pushed me out of Production Division and into Open. On one of the later stages, I wound up with 11 rounds in one of my magazines. In a moment of panic, my stage plan fell apart and I ran the gun dry. Unfortunately, this occurred while my illegally stuffed production magazine was in the gun.
I can only guess as to why my magazine had one too many rounds in it but, as they say, it is what it is. I was pretty bummed out about it since I knew I didn’t have a chance in Open Division. I tried to forget about it and focus on shooting a good match but, to be honest, it was rather embarrassing.
My goal was to not be dead last in the division. The only Open Division shooter that I was able to beat recently came off of shoulder surgery (or so I hear) so even that victory was short-lived. When looking at the combined results, I came in 58th out of 159 Shooters. Its tough to project where I would have come in within Production Division (without recalculating the results on my own) but it looks like I would have been towards the bottom of the pack in B Class.
Regardless of how the match results turned out, I had a great time. The stages were loads of fun and each offered their own set of challenges. The memory stage was a monster and I can’t thank Joe enough for helping me figure it out. Without the help it would have been a complete disaster (I have a lot of trouble with memory stages).
Due to a hectic work schedule, I was only able to volunteer on Saturday. I worked with a good group of guys who all did their part to make our bay run as smoothly as possible. The shooters did a great job of helping us help them. We didn’t run into any issues with shooters not helping reset the stage the one instance of range-lawyering was taken care of quickly by the area director.
I realize that it is very premature but I hope that Lower Providence elects to hold the USPSA Mid Atlantic Sectional Championship again next year. This was easily the best USPSA Match I’ve ever shot and I can’t wait to do it all over again next year.