By Anthony Mitchell
For The Daily Item
ELYSBURG -- Besides a keen eye and steady hand, there is one other key to Joseph Recla's success -- his family.
The native of Mahanoy Plane had one constant during his shoots last year in that his family traveled with him to every event in which he competed.
"Having my parents there is more of a motivation than a downgrade," Recla said. "I like having them there. It makes me feel more at home when I'm farther away from actual home."
It was not just any ordinary year for Recla.
Throughout a season that saw the foursome -- Recla along with his father Joe, mother Kathy and brother Ian -- span the country traveling to shoots, the younger Joe was named Trapshooter of the Year by the Pennsylvania Trapshooting Hall of Fame.
"(Trapshooter of the Year) means a lot of hard work paid off," Recla said. "Now that I'll be in (the Hall of Fame), I just don't believe it. I don't picture myself as being one of those (Hall of Famers) but now that my picture is going to be in there, I am one of those guys."
In 2012, Recla made the nation's gun ranges into his personal playgrounds, taking home first place in the junior events in nearly every shoot he entered. In his first trip to Elysburg during 2012, Recla gave spectators a taste of what was to come by sweeping the junior singles, doubles and handicap events.
At the state shoot, Recla returned to Elysburg to capture another junior singles title along with the junior doubles title, a class singles title and the Dennis Spancake Memorial and Howard E. Lewis Memorial for winning Junior Singles.
At the end of the state shoot, Recla added the Junior All-Around title to his rapidly-growing list of wins.