No. 1 Mountaineers End Semester Victoriously

  • By Shannon McNamara
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  • November 13, 2016 05:19 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va.  – The No. 1-ranked West Virginia University rifle team concluded its 2016-17 fall season with a 4712-4657 win at No. 13 Army West Point, today, inside the Tronsrue Marksmanship Center in West Point, New York.
For the second straight day, the Mountaineers (7-0, 5-0 GARC) swept a Great America Rifle Conference (GARC) opponent in both disciplines, winning air rifle, 2374-2354, and smallbore, 2338-2303.
The Mountaineers defeated No. 9 Mississippi, 4704-4644, yesterday, also in West Point.
“It was another solid day and team effort,” Mountaineer coach Jon Hammond said. “There was a risk of fatigue today since we shot yesterday, but everyone shot a little bit better in both disciplines for some solid individual improvements.”
Senior Jean-Pierre Lucas again led the way in smallbore, matching his season-high score with a 588 (197 kneeling, 198 prone, 193 standing) showing. Freshman Morgan Phillips shot 587 and finished in second place, while classmate Milica Babic recorded a career high with a third place, 583 showing. Junior Elizabeth Gratz shot 580 and finished in fourth place.
“Milica’s ability has always been there, but what we’re seeing now is she’s gaining comfort as each week goes by,” Hammond noted. “She had a good weekend, and today was a good smallbore showing.”
Additionally, sophomore Will Anti shot 571, and freshman Jack Anderson finished with a 568 mark.
The air rifle relay finished in a three-way tie for first place, as Phillips (99-100-99-99-98-99), Gratz (98-97-100-100-100-99) and Babic (100-99-97-100-99-99) all shot 594; the mark is a career best for Phillips.
“Morgan continues to improve in air rifle each week,” Hammond said. “She finished with a season-best 1181 aggregate score today, too. Overall, she had a strong day.”
Lucas tied for fourth place with a 592 score, while Anti finished seventh with a 588 mark. Anderson shot 580.
Five Mountaineers counted toward the team scores: Anti, Babic, Gratz, Lucas and Phillips.
“It’s been a really good semester – there was a lot of growth and improvement,” Hammond said. “This is a much younger team than last year, and overall we had a steady semester with strong team scores. I’m satisfied with where the team is, and I’m happy with the individual and group progress. We’ll enjoy a good break, which will set us up for a strong showing in the spring.” 


NCAA, WVU, rifle