COLUMBUS, Ohio — Alaska-Fairbanks did not disappoint on day one of the inaugural Patriot Rifle Conference Championship, claiming the smallbore competition by more than 30 points on Saturday at the Lt. Hugh W. Wylie Range on the campus of Ohio State.
In the individual final, the Nanooks (9-1, 3-0 PRC) took three of the top four spots, led by junior Ryan Anderson, who was crowned the first PRC smallbore individual champion after outlasting the seven other top scorers in a knock-out style match.
“Ryan’s really stepped and done well in the finals in the NCAA championship the last two years,” head coach Dan Jordan said. “It was really fun to see the final with three of the eight being from Alaska and it was really close at the end for the last couple shots.”
Sophomore Lorelie Stanfield took silver in the final as she was 1.1 points back of Anderson while sophomore Tim Sherry was fourth, behind Ohio State’s Amanda Luoma, who seized the bronze.
“To see us have three of the final four, that was great,” Jordan said. “Tim made a really strong comeback and Lorelie almost caught Ryan. She was really pushing him and wanted to be in the top spot on the team.”
In the 60-shot match for score, Alaska led the way with a 2339 and will take a 33 point lead into the air rifle portion on Sunday against TCU, which shot a 2306.
Host OSU is one point back of TCU with a 2305, while Air Force is fourth (2303) and Nevada sits in fifth (2260). The sixth member, UTEP, was unable to make the trip due to mechanical issues with the plane coming out of Texas.
Sherry fired a match-high 588 while Anderson and Stanfield were tied for second-highest mark with matching 587s. Anderson edged Stanfield in the standings, however, due to his 35 center shots to her 32.
Junior Mats Eriksson shot a 577, which was the 11th-best score by a PRC shooter, while senior Mike Liuzza completed the team’s day with a 572.
Five other shooters fired a 580 or better in the smallbore match, including 581s by TCU’s Hannah Black, OSU’s Luoma and Air Force’s David Higgins, while TCU’s Megan Lee and OSU’s Remington Lyman both tallied 580s.
No. 1 West Virginia 4,702, No. 2 Kentucky 4,688
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia defeated Great American Rifle Conference (GARC) foe Kentucky for the regular-season GARC title 4,702-4,688 at the WVU Rifle Range.
This is the Mountaineers’ seventh regular-season GARC title, and the team won its last in 2010. Kentucky, the defending champions, had claimed the past three titles to date, and suffered its only conference loss of the season.
“It’s something we haven’t done in a while and it’s nice to be the regular-season GARC champions,” coach Jon Hammond said. “It’s definitely something we really wanted and worked for.”
The Mountaineers (10-0, 7-0 GARC) dominated in air rifle in their last regular-season match, setting a national and school record with a 2,382 team score. The Wildcats (9-3, 6-1 GARC) trailed with a 2,364 score.
In smallbore, the Mountaineers fell to the Wildcats by four shots, 2,324-2,320.
The Mountaineers earned four of the top five spots in air rifle. Junior Prediger, classmate Dvorsak and sophomore Garrett Spurgeon placed first with 596 marks. The score is one shot short of Dvorsak’s season high and is a career high for Spurgeon.
Taking fifth place, junior Thomas Kyanko shot 594, tying his career high. Junior Meelis Kiisk shot 585 to complete the Mountaineer scoring squad.
In smallbore, sophomore Patrick Sunderman shot a career-high 585, placing second. Kyanko tied for second, one shot short of his season high. Freshman Jean-Pierre Lucas shot 584, a shot short of his personal best, placing fourth.
Dvorsak and Spurgeon earned sixth place with 580 marks. Kiisk shot 575, while Prediger shot 568.
Dvorsak, Kiisk, Kyanko, Prediger and Spurgeon made up the Mountaineer smallbore scoring squad.
Pacing the Wildcats in both guns, Emily Holsopple scored 587 in smallbore, finishing first. Her 596 air rifle score was good enough for fourth.
No. 4 Jacksonville State at OVC Championship
MURRAY, Ky. — Jacksonville State is halfway to another Ohio Valley Conference championship after winning the OVC smallbore championship on Saturday on Murray State campus.
The Gamecocks will enter the air rifle portion of the two-day event with a four-point edge against the host Racers. Jax State accumulated a smallbore score of 2,299, while MSU posted a 2,295 smallbore aggregate score.
JSU was crowned the OVC Smallbore Champion for the seventh time since joining the league and won its third title in a row. The Gamecocks will look to bring home their third consecutive overall title and eighth in the program’s history.
Jax State was led by sophomore Samantha Bullard, who tallied a 578 score to claim bronze. Junior Dan McCall finished right behind Bullard in fourth place with a 576. Senior Sam Muegge carded another top-10 finish with a 573 to claim ninth. Cole Tucker and Brent Books rounded out the JSU scores with a 572 and 570 respectively.
MSU’s Tessa Howald won medalist honors with a top score of 582. Dacotah Faught finished second with a 580.
No. 5 Nebraska 4,690, No. 15 NC State 4,659
WEST POINT, N.Y. — Nebraska shattered the program’s previous air rifle record by three points in the 4,690-4,659 victory against NC State on Saturday. The Huskers finished with a team score of 4,690, making that the second-highest team score in program history.
Rachel Martin fired career bests in both air rifle and smallbore. Martin finished with a smallbore score of 585 and a 593 in air rifle. Kelsey Hansen also shot a 593 in air rifle to help the Huskers overcome NC State. The team finished with a team smallbore score of 2,331 and an air rifle score of 2,359.
Cliff Daniel finished with a 572 in smallbore for the Wolfpack. NC State ended with a team smallbore score of 2,261. Amy Roderer tried to help the Wolfpack defeat Nebraska with a score of 578 in air rifle, but the Huskers were on fire and NC State was not able to get the upset. NC State’s final air rifle score was 2,300, giving the team a total score of 4,561.
This win puts Nebraska at 9-2 for the season.