No. 5 UK Rifle Finishes Second at GARC Championships
OXFORD, Miss. -- The fifth-ranked Kentucky rifle team finished in second place at the Great American Rifle Conference Championships on Sunday inside Ole Miss' Patricia C. Lamar National Guard Center.
Top-ranked West Virginia used an impressive air rifle score of 2386 to win the Championship with a combined score of 4709. Kentucky finished with a score of 4671.
Kentucky and West Virginia entered Sunday tied after each scored 2323 in smallbore on Saturday.
"We had a good day yesterday," UK head coach Harry Mullins said. "We had the opportunity to put up a good number today and we fell a bit short in air rifle. That is typically our stronger event so we were kind of disappointed at that. Some good things came out of it.
"Connor (Davis) shot a 593 and ended up making it to the final individually."
Davis finished second in individual combined with a score of 1181, two points behind West Virginia's Maren Prediger. Davis entered the weekend averaging a 1174.692 combined score, which ranks No. 3 in the NCAA.
He was UK's top air rifle performer, and shot a 205.4 in the final - good for second place.
"It's always disappointing to come in second when you have the opportunity to win, but it wasn't like West Virginia shot poorly. West Virginia had a great air rifle performance. Scoring 2386 is a phenomenal air rifle number. Our hats off to them. You can't say anything but `great job .' We didn't perform poorly it's just West Virginia performed great. We just have to stay true to that and see where we end up in two weeks."
Heather Kirby scored a 587 in air rifle, while Sonya May scored 586. Jason Sharbel posted a 582 and Jon Pinkel posted a 578.
"We learned a lot," Mullins said. "We learned about ourselves in air rifle today - to be able to handle the situation. We're going to have to learn to take advantage of situations and opportunities that are presented to us.
On Saturday Connor Davis won the smallbore individual conference title with a score of 588, three points off his school record, which came two weeks ago. Davis scored the 588 to advance to the final where he won with a 456.6.
In 2014, Kentucky finished second in the GARC Championships. West Virginia won the title.
Kentucky will next compete at the NCAA Championships March 13-14, which will be hosted by Alaska-Fairbanks.