No. 3 Kentucky Rifle Travels to NCAA Championships
March 7, 2013
LEXINGTON, Ky. - As one of eight teams left vying for the national title, the University of Kentucky rifle team will compete in the 2013 NCAA Championships Friday and Saturday at Converse Hall and French Field House in Columbus, Ohio, hosted by Ohio State University
Individual and team smallbore competition will be held Friday, March 8, at Converse Hall, while individual and team air rifle competition will take place Saturday, March 9, in French Field House.
The eight-team field features the top eight ranked teams in the country, including Alaska-Fairbanks, Air Force, Army, Jacksonville State, Kentucky, Nebraska, TCU and West Virginia.
"The field is tough, you've got TCU and West Virginia, those two teams have religiously broken 4700," UK head coach Harry Mullins said. "The NCAA's does funny things with your brain. It's going to be very close. It's going to be one of the better matches of the NCAA Championships in the past 10 or 15 years. I expect it to be a close race down to the finish."
All eight teams will bring five-shooter teams, with an additional eight individuals selected from scores shot at designated qualifiers. Kentucky boasts two of the four individuals competing in smallbore, sophomore Elijah Ellis and senior Stacy Wheatley.
The Wildcats enter the championships following a second-place finish at the Great America Rifle Conference Championships. The Wildcats shot an aggregate 4690, second only to West Virginia's 4705. Davis walked away from the GARC Championships as the individual air rifle champion, shooting a 596 and 105 in the final to take the title by half a point.
Kentucky claimed its sixth GARC regular-season title this year, and third in as many years. Junghänel led the Wildcats throughout the course of the year, averaging a 588.2 in smallbore and 593.2 in air rifle to this point in the season.
"Each team at the NCAA Championships trains to peak at the right time and hopefully we have done so," Mullins said. "This is a hard-working group, they've fought some tough battles throughout the course of the year and I'd love to see the work that they've put in this year pay off. I'm looking for them to stay together as a group, stay focused and accomplish what they set out to do at the beginning of the year."
Live results from the competition will be available at NCAA.com.