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  • Kentucky Rifle Begins 2022 NCAA Championships Friday

    NCAA Rifle Championships begin Friday in Colorado Springs, Colorado


    LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky rifle team, which has had a memorable season winning the Great America Rifle Conference regular season and tournament championships, looks for its fourth national championship in program history this weekend at the 2022 NCAA Rifle Championships in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

    The national event will begin Friday with smallbore and conclude Saturday with air rifle competition. The event will take place inside the United States Air Force Academy's Clune Arena in Colorado Springs, Colorado. A individual final will take place following each discipline with a team champion crowned after air rifle competition. The NCAA Rifle Championships will be streamed live on NCAA.com each day, while live scoring will be available at UKathletics.com.

    Kentucky, which is currently ranked second nationally has won the national title three times – 2011, 2018 and 2021 – with six runner-up finishes.

    UK qualified for the event after a strong regular season and NCAA qualifying score. Each team's three score aggregate average – the score based on each team's highest three regular season scores fired at three different locations – was added to each team’s NCAA qualifier score to determine the field for the event. Kentucky along with Air Force, Alaska Fairbanks, Murray State, Navy, Ole Miss, TCU and West Virginia had the eight highest combined scores, thus qualifying for the NCAA Championship.

    UK's three scores it counted as part of its NCAA Qualifying score are the school-record 4752 at Army on January 16, an impressive 4741 fired at Murray State on Jan. 22 and its 4736 at Navy on Oct. 30. Kentucky then fired a 4735 in qualifying for a final total of 9478. Alaska Fairbanks was the top qualifier at 9490. TCU was third at 9477.33, followed by Air Force, Ole Miss, WVU, Navy and Murray State.

    Kentucky is averaging an aggregate score of 4721.92 this season thanks to a 2344.42 smallbore average and 2377.50 air rifle average. It has been a year full of school records as the Wildcats set new program marks in smallbore, air rifle and aggregate. All three marks came in UK’s win vs. NC State at Army. The match started with Kentucky earning a school-record team score in smallbore of 2360, besting its previous best of 2358. The Wildcats topped that in air rifle with a school-record 2392, which was one better than the previous best of 2391. The two high marks totaled a 4752 aggregate team score, which was not only a school record but a NCAA record. Both TCU and Alaska Fairbanks scored 4752 team scores in succeeding weeks.

    The Wildcats are one of two teams in the nation that have scored two team smallbore scores of 2359 or higher this season. UK has the second and third highest air rifle team scores in the nation this season as the only team to score over 2390 in the discipline twice. Overall, the Wildcats along with TCU and Alaska Fairbanks are the only teams to score team aggregate marks of 4740 or better this season.

    Junior Mary Tucker, who earned a silver medal in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, leads Kentucky averaging a 1186.8 aggregate this season with a 589.9 in smallbore and 596.9 in air rifle. Senior Will Shaner, who won a gold medal in air rifle in Tokyo, is earning a 1186.4 aggregate this season behind a 589.6 smallbore and 596.8 air rifle. Senior Richard Clark is having a great season for the Wildcats, earning a 585.25 in smallbore and 594.083 in air rifle. Freshman Allison Buesseler has performed well for UK in the last few months and earned her first spot in both lineups this weekend, scoring well in both disciplines. On the season, she is averaging 574.636 in smallbore and 591.667 in air rifle. Junior Jaden Thompson is having a strong year averaging 578.7 in smallbore and 588.7 in air rifle.

    UK is coming off earning the GARC Championship two weekends in West Point, New York. Needing a big score in the final air rifle relay, Buesseler posted a career-high tying 598 to give Kentucky just enough to earn the 2022 GARC Championship. The Wildcats earned the title thanks to a 2383 air rifle team score on top of a 2352 smallbore team score from Friday for a 4735 overall aggregate. The championship is the second for Kentucky in the last three season after the Wildcats also won the crown in 2020. It was Kentucky's seventh GARC Championship title all-time.
    Comments 11 Comments
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      @UKRifle: Eyes forward, 🔒 in, let’s go!

      Here’s how to follow along today as the first relay gets underway at 11 a.m. ET. #GoBigBlue

      Scorecard: http://bit.ly/3CDFrBl
      Live 🎯: http://results.megalink.no
      Live Stream: http://NCAA.com/event/4130 https://twitter.com/UKRifle/status/1...749893/photo/1
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      Smallbore up first.

      After five rounds (out of 7) for the first 2 shooters (out of five shooters-I don't know if all five count or if they drop the lowest), scores are as follows:

      1. Kentucky, 792
      1. Ole Miss, 792
      3. Air Force, 791
      4. Alaska Fairbanks, 788
      5. TCU, 787
      6. West Virginia, 783
      7. Navy, 782
      8. Murray State, 776

      Schools that have not yet had two shooters finish:

      Akron, Army, Jacksonville State, Memphis, Nebraska, and Ohio State.
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      Alaska Fairbanks is ranked number one, with Kentucky ranked number two and TCU ranked number three. The current standings are

      Kentucky 2360
      Alaska Fairbanks 2351
      TCU 2350

      I don't know if they are finished for today or not, but it is a two-day event. In any event, it's a good start for Kentucky.

      I noticed that they take the top four Shooters out of five, just like they do in golf competition.
    1. CitizenBBN's Avatar
      CitizenBBN -
      I clicked on the link for the live scores, and didn't really get it completely. I think they weren't done shooting for the day at that point which I think was part of the confusion.
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      @UKRifle: Kentucky shoots a 2360 in smallbore, which was the best team score on day one.

      Shaner, Tucker and Clark made smallbore individual final, which is starting now.

      #GoBigBlue

      Live 🎯: http://results.megalink.no
      Live Stream: http://NCAA.com/event/4130 https://twitter.com/UKRifle/status/1...022978/photo/1
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      Quote Originally Posted by CitizenBBN View Post
      I clicked on the link for the live scores, and didn't really get it completely. I think they weren't done shooting for the day at that point which I think was part of the confusion.
      I'm glad I wasn't the only one that was confused. I think I have it mostly figured out but not completely. They update the scores as they occur, which can be confusing when some teams are in and some teams are not. It is also more confusing if you look at a team total, because it changes depending upon what the worst score is, since they take the top four shooter scores only.

      I really think they could do a better job with how they present it oh, but nobody asked me and I may not be the target audience... Pun definitely intended.
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      Oh, and the one time I tried to click on the live stream it wasn't working. So the scores were the only things that I was paying attention to after all.
    1. CitizenBBN's Avatar
      CitizenBBN -
      I love that we're good and I love shooting a rifle and really appreciate it as a sport, but it's a hard sport to follow.
    1. Catfan73's Avatar
      Catfan73 -
      Two questions…why does it say hosted by Ohio State if they’re at the Air Force Academy and how can the team with the two Olympic medalists not be ranked number 1?
    1. Darrell KSR's Avatar
      Darrell KSR -
      Ohio State is just providing the electronic platform, probably doing the grunt work and putting information and manning the computers. It's actually being hosted at the Air Force facility.

      On the second question, it relates to scores during the season. They take the highest certain number of scores and that's how they are ranked. It's an objective standard and does a pretty good job of ranking according to how you have actually performed, based on sort of a consistent ceiling type of ranking.
    1. Catfan73's Avatar
      Catfan73 -
      That actually makes sense, thanks.
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