No. 13 Rifle Drops Road GARC Match at No. 3 Kentucky
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 13th-ranked Navy rifle team was felled Sunday in a road matchup at No. 3 Kentucky by a final score of 4,711 – 4,640. Shooting at the Wildcats’ Buell Armory, the Mids performed well, but were unable to overcome two outstanding halves of competition by the host Kentucky (1-0, 1-0 GARC) squad. Josh Watson (Jr., Enterprise, Ala.) led the effort for Navy (2-1, 1-1 GARC) on Sunday with a career-high 586-point score in smallbore on his way to a team-high aggregate of 1,164.
Sunday’s competition began with Navy matching its season average in smallbore with 2,295 points. Watson was the leader for the Mids in that portion of the match with the highest individual smallbore score for a Navy shooter since Daniel Jonas tallied an identical 586 versus West Virginia on Feb. 11, 2016. On his way to a 586 on Sunday, Watson notched a perfect 200/200 in prone and 195/200 in kneeling.
Freshmen Daniel Enger (Walla Walla, Wash.) and Torrance Kang (Columbia, Md.) recorded the Mids’ next two counting scores at 571 and 570, respectively. Luke Knollinger (Fr., Wheeling Park, W.Va.) posted Navy’s final score with 568 points.
After Kentucky responded with a 2,335 in smallbore to take a 40-point lead at the break, Navy came out in air rifle and saw its counting lineup register a 2,345 score, two points above its season average. Kang led the Mids’ quartet of counters with a 589-point result. She was followed closely by Thomas Sarant (Sr., Massapequa, N.Y.) at 588 and Enger at 585. Kestrel Kuhne (So., Everett, Pa.) rounded out the Mids’ lineup with 583 points.
Kang has now gone back-to-back weeks with team-high air rifle scores as she shot a 590 on Oct. 7 versus the Coast Guard Academy.
Kentucky shot a 2,376 in its portion of the air rifle match with freshman Henrik Larsen notching a 598 on his way to a match-high 1,191 aggregate. That mark is the third-highest aggregate score in the 2017-18 NCAA season.
“We had a decent match today and shot a few points above our match average,” remarked head coach Mike Anti. “We had a few bright spots, with three air rifle scores at 585 or above led by Torrance’s 589. In smallbore, Josh shot an amazing 586.
“We have a couple of weeks before our next match and look forward to some good training.”
Navy will take three weeks off from competition in preparation for the 2017 President’s Trophy Match. The four-team meet between the service academies is set to start at 8:00 a.m. on Nov. 4 at Navy’s Bancroft Hall Rifle Range.