It’s official, the Yukon now has two of the country’s best air-pistol shooters.
Pelly Crossing’s sisters, Danielle and Kyley Marcotte, made that unassailable with medals at the Canadian National Pistol Championships last week in Calgary.
Competing in junior women’s 10-metre air pistol shooting event, Kyley won the bronze while Danielle won gold, taking back Canada’s top ranking in her division.
“It was a hard shoot. I didn’t do as well as I could, but I still got the position I wanted,” said Danielle, 18. “I was off a lot. I don’t know the exact reason, but there could have been a lot that played in with that – travel and not a lot of rest.”
Long days of travel en route to the championships took more of a toll on Danielle than Kyley, causing her to shoot about 10 points below her average. In fact, she went into the final, a shoot-off between the top eight competitors, in second place.
“I pretty much shoot all my finals the same,” said Danielle. “It’s always the first shot in any match that you have to get through because that’s the one I’m most nervous at. But once you start doing what you’re used to, it just plays out the same.”
While Danielle has won numerous medals at the national level, the Canadian championships were the first for Kyley, who earned a national ranking of ninth for junior women.
“I almost felt intimidated because it was my first time shooting at the nationals,” said Kyley.
Surprisingly, the 16-year-old hasn’t even been in the sport for a full year. She first picked up a pistol last October.
“It was fun; it was a good experience,” said Kyley. “It was scary when I first started, but it was fun throughout the whole thing.
“I’m pretty excited I got bronze. I didn’t think I’d get that. I’m happy”
Despite her short time in the sport, Kyley has already had numerous successes.
Danielle and Kyley won Yukon’s first medals of the Canada Winter Games in February, taking gold in the team event before Danielle won a second gold in the individual women’s air pistol event. For the second gold, Danielle set three Canada Games records. Kyley came ninth in the individual event.
In their first team event together – and Kyley’s first competition – the sisters won gold at the 2011 Canadian Grande Prix air-gun competition last January in Toronto. At the shoot, Danielle won gold in the female international juniors category and also in the finals, while Kyley finished first in the female sub junior category on the first day for a gold.
Danielle, who is a member of the national development team, has travelled the world competing.
A year ago, Danielle was the only Yukoner on the Canadian team at the first-ever Youth Olympic Games in Singapore, finishing fourth in the junior women’s event.
A former junior Ranger, Danielle twice won the Junior Ranger Regional Air Rifle Championship, a competition between the three territories.
At the 2009 USA Shooting Winter Airgun Championships, which hosted 260 rifle and pistol airgun shooters from the US plus 40 more from 11 countries from around the world, Danielle made the top five.
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