NCAA CHAMPIONS: UK Rifle Wins Title
COLUMBUS, Ga. -- Behind gritty performances from veterans Heather Greathouse and Ethan Settlemires, the Kentucky rifle team won the overall national title at the 2010-11 NCAA Championships, hosted by Columbus State. After UK won the smallbore NCAA Title on Friday in the first day of competition, the Wildcats held off WVU's charge in air rifle on Saturday to secure the first national championship in program history, finishing with a 4700 team total score.
The NCAA Championship is the first in the storied history of the UK rifle program. Since the 1994 season, the Wildcats have finished among the top 10 teams at the national championships a total of 16 times. UK owned four runner-up finishes and four third-place finishes since 1994 entering Saturday, including a fourth-place finish in 2009-10.
"I am so proud of this team," UK head coach Harry Mullins said. "This was our goal from day one, to have a chance to shoot a 4700 as a team. We knew if we did that we would be right there at the end. It is a tremendous honor to come out on top among such a great group of teams and shooters. We have had a magical season and it is surreal to be standing here at the end of the year as the national champion."
After UK got off to a tremendous start on Friday behind Greathouse's 587 on the first relay, the Wildcats again sent Greathouse in the first relay on Saturday, a change from the typical routine throughout the season. Greathouse again responded under the pressure, putting up a 591 to set the tone for the Wildcats final day of competition. Freshman Emily Holsopple contributed a 590, with Henri Junghanel charting a team-high 594.