Rifle Team Turned In a Solid Performance in Texas
The Air Force rifle team finished third with an aggregate 4584 at UTEP on Jan. 15-16. Alaska-Fairbanks (4704) was the top winner, followed by the host team UTEP (4644). In team scoring, the Falcons scored 2285/2295 in both smallbore and air rifle, respectively. Alaska-Fairbanks scored 2356/2348 (4704), while UTEP scored 2320/2324 (4644).
In El Paso, the rifle team turned in solid performances against UTEP and Alaska-Fairbanks. The match was a three-way head to head contest and the Academy entry in the month-long Southwest Invitational.
"Last weekend's contest at UTEP was a very solid performance by the Falcon rifle team. We will not know the final standings of the invitational portion for a couple weeks," said head coach Justin Broughton.
AFA's Chris Hill came away with a 585 in smallbore and a 576 in air rifle. Hill also scored 580 in the air rifle tournament competition. Teammate Matt Colvin scored 577 in smallbore, 578 in air rifle and 570 in the air rifle tournament. Matt Rawlings from Alaska-Fairbanks was the weekend's top shooter, finishing with 589 smallbore and 595 air rifle scores. Leah Wilcox was UTEP's top shooter, scoring 589 in smallbore and 585 in air rifle.
In smallbore, AFA's Tim Siemer scored 573 and had a 574 in the air rifle tournament. Michelle Bonneau finished with a 550 smallbore. Jessica Palomba scored 574 in air rifle and 575 in the air tournament. Justin Raines had a 567 in air rifle.
AFA's rifle coaches were pleased with this past weekend's performances and results. "The team is continuing its upward trend in team and individual scores. The most important contest of the year is February 12-13, which is the NCAA Championships Qualification match," said Broughton.
The team has been off regular-season competition since December when it faced-off against the University of Kentucky in Lexington. Since then, the rifle team has had some solid practice performances. "We were very excited to see match performances that were consistent with our practices over the last week. One of the good things about last weekend was that the team continued to see five or more team members working for the top-four slots that count for the NCAA Qualifiers," said Broughton.
Though the coaches did not pick the shooters ahead of time for the Southwest Invitational that shot the best, they did develop some well deserved first-team experience. The team has this weekend off before traveling to Fort Worth, Texas, January 28-29, to compete against Texas Christian University.
Air Force Rifle Scores -- Jan. 15-16
Air Force Scoring: Smallbore Air Rifle
BONNEAU MICHELLE 550 571
SIEMER TIM 573 576
PALOMBA JESSICA 575 574
RAINES JUSTIN 577 567
COLVIN MATT 577 578
HILL CHRIS 585 576
BENDER THOMAS 550 562
BURDETTE BENJAMIN 556 557
GALLAGHER EDWARD 562 548
SIMPSON ANDREW 560 553
Team Totals: 2285 2295
Top four scores in bold italics
Tournament Scores: Air Rifle
HILL CHRIS 580
COLVIN MATT 570
SIEMER TIM 574
BONNEAU MICHELLE 569
Team Total: 2299