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The Drill: Jahnz taking aim at excellence at Minnesota West

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WORTHINGTON — When it comes to both trapshooting and baseball, Minnesota West Community and Technical College freshman Zach Jahnz hopes to always be on target.

Jahnz, who grew up in Truman and graduated from Granada-Huntley-East Chain High School, has a history of excellence in both endeavors, and he hopes to continue to shine while attending college here in Worthington.

In trapshooting, Jahnz qualified during his senior year to compete in the state trap shoot event hosted in Prior Lake and Chaska. He shot 99 out of 100.

“It was fun,” Jahnz remembered. “I missed my fourth bird of the day and ran the rest of them, which is kind of frustrating, but if I would have missed anything after that, I wouldn’t have been on the podium due to reverse run.”

Jahnz also qualified for the Minnesota All-Star Game for baseball during his senior season. During his junior year, his high school team advanced to the state tournament.

“My year overall was pretty good.” he said. “It lacked a little bit — I walked a couple more people than I would have liked to, but I really turned myself into a strikeout pitcher, which is really big in the game.”

Jahnz noted that he has a fastball capable of topping out at 94 mph, “which hit a kid in the face and broke some things and knocked out a couple of teeth.” Yes, baseball and shooting trap can be both be about keeping on target.

Here are a couple of other highlights from a visit with Jahnz for a regular installment of The Drill (you can check out the video online at

QUESTION:  How do you work to get better control of your pitches?

ANSWER: “I’d have to say the biggest part (is) about learning finger pressure with fastballs and everything like that, because I throw all of ‘em. You just practice and work on it and never give up on it because you’ll get there at some point.”

QUESTION: Who inspires you most when it comes to shooting?

ANSWER: “My dad inspires me the most because he’s always there for me. I mean, he drove up yesterday and started at six o’clock in the morning to come watch me up in Grand Rapids shoot.

“I’m a big hunter, I hunt deer, pheasant, turkey, geese, duck, you name it. I spend a lot of time out in the deer stand with bows and everything. Actually, after this (video shoot), I’m heading out to the Black Hills for deer hunting, so that’ll be fun.”

Ryan McGaughey

I first joined the Daily Globe in April 2001 as sports editor. I later became the news editor in November 2002, and the managing editor in August 2006. I'm originally from New York State, and am married with two children.

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