Seven Rifle Stars Earn All-Conference Honors
LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Winners of the first NCAA Championship in program history during the 2010-11 season, the Kentucky rifle team had seven student-athletes named to the Great American Rifle Conference all-league team, it was announced.
“It is always a great honor in our conference to get selected for these awards,” UK head coach Harry Mullins said. “Typically over 80-percent of the athletes on the all-conference teams are also selected for All America honors. Thus the field to make all conference is very strong. You not only have to be at the top in the conference but you are competing with a large part of the top in the nation.”
Kentucky, which rode sparkling performances at the NCAA Championships to the exhilarating national title earlier in March, placed a league-best seven student-athletes on the all-league teams. Newcomers Henri Junghänel and Emily Holsopple led the way, with both earning first-team honors in smallbore and air rifle. In addition, Heather Greathouse and Ethan Settlemires – two of the heros from the NCAA Championships – earned first-team accolades in air rifle.
Junghänel was named GARC Rookie of the Year, the second consecutive season a UK athlete has received the honor.
“I am very proud of our team for having as many all conference selections this year,” Mullins said. “Stacy Wheatley had the biggest jump from last year to this year and having the rookie of the year for the second year in a row makes you feel confident that the program is heading in the right direction.”
Katie Fretts, the 2009-10 GARC Rookie of the Year, earned second-team accolades in air rifle, while senior Logan Fox was honored with second-team honors in smallbore and a spot on the honorable mention team in air rifle. Stacy Wheatley was also honored on the honorable mention team in air rifle.
In the combined all-conference honors, Holsopple, Greathouse and Junghänel were named first-team, while Settlemires and Fox earned second-team honors. Fretts was named honorable mention in the combined guns.
Junghänel led UK throughout the year in terms of average, totaling a 583.40 smallbore average and a 592.80 average in air rifle (out of 600 possible), the second-best numbers in the league, behind only World Champion Nicco Campriani. Holsopple had the fourth-best combined average (1171.500) in six league matches, averaging 591 in air rifle. Greathouse had an 1165.444 combined average, with a 589 in air rifle.
In addition, Sarah Broeker was named the UK representative on the GARC Scholar-Athlete of the Year team.
“I am so proud of all of our shooters and as strong as our conference is, for us to place so many in the top spots are a great accomplishment. I am very proud of their efforts this season and this is a well deserved award for our shooters. The hard work that they have put in all year has paid off for them in the end. It seems every year to make the all conference team gets tougher and for us to have as many as we did makes you feel proud as a coach and should speak volumes of the efforts that our team has given throughout the season.”