No. 3 UK Rifle Heads to NCAA Championships

March 12, 2014

LEXINGTON, Ky. - After placing second in the previous two NCAA Championships since winning the title in 2011, the University of Kentucky rifle team will head to the 2014 NCAA Championships in Murray, Ky., this weekend, competing in smallbore on Friday followed by air rifle on Saturday.

"It's going to be an exciting championships," UK head coach Harry Mullins said. "We should see a lot of parity and I expect the outcome to come right down to the wire at the end. From top to bottom, there are many players in the hunt, not just the typical top three or four schools."

Kentucky is one of eight programs competing in the championships, with the rest of the field being made up by Alaska-Fairbanks, Jacksonville State, Memphis, Nebraska, TCU, Army and West Virginia.

"Everyone in the field has proven they can put up some strong numbers," Mullins said. "Alaska and West Virginia have broken 4700 multiple times, including West Virginia shooting 2380 in air rifle numerous times. Nebraska and Jacksonville St. have things clicking and are really going to make this an interesting match."

Kentucky's counters will include seniors Emily Holsopple and Aaron Holsopple, sophomore Connor Davis and freshmen Heather Kirby and Sonya May.

Emily Holsopple and Kirby will shoot in the first smallbore relay at 8 a.m., Friday, while Aaron Holsopple will shoot in the second relay and Davis and May will round out the day for UK in the third relay.

Emily Holsopple, Aaron Holsopple and Kirby will shoot in the first air rifle relay on Friday at 8 a.m. Davis and May will conclude the championships in the second air rifle relay.

The Wildcats recently took second at the Great America Rifle Conference Championships, while claiming the conference air rifle title with a 2364. Davis led UK in air rifle with a 597, the second-highest score in the match.

UK finished runner-up at the 2013 NCAA Championships, shooting a 2315 in smallbore and a 2355 in air rifle to post an aggregate score of 4670. Davis paced Kentucky with a 592 in air rifle and placed fourth individually after the air rifle final.

West Virginia claimed the 2013 title with an aggregate score of 4679.

"The championships sometimes bring out scores from some people you normally don't see while the pressure gets to some and causes them to struggle," Mullins said. "I expect this could be one of the most exciting I've been to in my career."

Live scoring and much more from the championships can be found at