Wildcats set NCAA record team score in rifle win vs. NC State
UK sets a school record team score in smallbore, air rifle and NCAA record aggregate team score
LEXINGTON, Ky. (UK Athletics) – The University of Kentucky rifle team put together the best performance in school history Sunday in its win vs. NC State, setting a school record team score in both air rifle and smallbore as part of a NCAA school-record aggregate score of 4752.
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 is not only a school record but a NCAA record.
“Very pleased with our performance today. It was a total team effort from top to bottom in both air rifle and smallbore,” UK head coach Harry Mullins said. “We still have some room to improve and we will get back to work this week on those areas. Overall, this weekend is a great start to the 2022 season. I am happy for the team to see their hard work in camp pay off.”
UK’s impressive day started in smallbore as the top three performers at the match were all Wildcats. Senior Will Shaner took home the top crown in the discipline with a 596, which was a career high and ties the highest individual smallbore score in the nation this season. Junior Mary Tucker finished just behind him with a 594, while senior Richard Clark was third overall in smallbore at 589. Also in the smallbore rotation was senior Mitchell Nelson scoring a 578 and junior Mason Hamilton at 581.
Kentucky kept its eye on the target in air rifle with all five athletes in the lineup scoring impressive marks. Tucker led the way with a perfect score of 600, marking the second time she has scored a perfect score in her career. She is one of three athletes to score a 600 this season in air rifle. Shaner finished just behind Tucker with a 599, which ties a career best, while Clark posted a 597 and freshman Allison Buesseler a 596. Junior Emmie Sellers wrapped up the rotation with a 589.
Shaner’s 1195 aggregate score ties a NCAA record aggregate score and is the highest aggregate score in the nation this season. Tucker posted the second highest aggregate score in the nation with a 1194. Clark earned a 1186 aggregate to finish third at the match, while Nelson scored a 593 in air rifle to earn a 1171 aggregate. Freshman Kayla Kalenza had a great match, scoring a 577 in smallbore and 592 in air rifle for a 1169 aggregate, while Sellers had a 578 in smallbore for a 1167 aggregate. Buesseler had a 566 in smallbore for a 1162 aggregate while Hamilton had a 579 in air rifle for a 1160 aggregate. Freshman Tori Kopelen had a 570 in smallbore and 590 in air rifle for a 1160 aggregate.
NC State scored a 2315 in smallbore and 2349 in air rifle for a 4664 overall. The Wolfpack was paced by Addy Burrow, who scored a 1167 aggregate.