Feb. 9, 2014
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - For its second straight match the Navy rifle team ran into an opponent, who shot a school record on its way to defeating the Mids. On Sunday, at the University of Memphis' RangeMaster facility, Navy fell to the hosts by a 4,683 to 4,627 final score.
After Ole Miss posted a program record in air rifle on Saturday, the Mids were undone by a blistering performance by the ninth-ranked Tigers, whose 4,683 aggregate score was 15 points higher than their previous mark.
"Today was tough," said Navy head coach Bill Kelley. "You're never pleased when you lose, but at the end of the day, you can't play defense in rifle, you only can control your own performance and I thought that we showed solidly and posted a score that will improve our NCAA qualifying average."
Looking deeper than the win-loss outcome, the Mids compiled their second-highest team score of the season on the strength of a 2,304-point result in smallbore and a 2,323-point effort in air rifle.
Alex Berry (Jr., Greensboro, N.C.) led Navy's smallbore counters with a career-high score of 581. Underclassmen Zach Gibson (So., Montrose, Colo.) and Dan Jonas (Fr., Allentown, N.J.) totaled the second and third-highest scores on Navy with respective outputs of 578 and 573. Steven Frazier (Sr., Macdonough, Ga.) and Jodi Cull-Host (So., Los Alamos, N.M.) rounded out the Midshipmen scorers in smallbore action with 572 and 563 totals, respectively.
"We're improving in the kneeling and prone disciplines of our smallbore and were leading after those two shots today, but our effort in standing let us down and swung the match to their favor," exclaimed Kelley after Navy's smallbore performance.
In the air rifle portion of the match, Navy had its top-four scorers register scores between 582 and 579. Jonas was the leader with a 582 score. Cull-Host and Gibson tied for runner up honors with matching 581 scores. Berry registered the fourth-highest total of 579 points.
"Alex Berry deserves kudos for her performance today, especially in smallbore" said Kelley. "The results she got today and overall in the second half of the season shows that all of the work that she has put in has helped her perform at a top level."
"With our final regular season match in two weeks, we will need all of our shooters to step up, our margin of error is too small to just ride one athlete."
Navy will close out its regular season with a home match on Feb. 22 versus John Jay. The Mids and the Bloodhounds will begin their competition at 8:00 am in the Bancroft Hall Rifle Range.