Men and women shoot consecutive high scores
Story by Alec Mullins, Contributing writer
Opening the season at No. 6 in the nation according to the Collegiate Rifle Coaches Association is an indication that the Rifle team is no stranger to success.
Claiming a victory against OVC opponent UT Martin was enough to propel the Murray State Rifle team to fifth overall as of Sept. 28.
The Racers then competed in Oxford, Mississippi, at the Patricia C. Lamar National Guard Readiness Center for the Ole Miss Invitational, where shooting a 4676 was good enough for the Racers to take second place, behind No. 3 TCU with a score of 4696.
After shooting the same score as a team in consecutive weeks, that type of effort is what Head Coach Alan Lollar is looking for in his team.
“In rifle we name five counters and the top four scores count for you and so it’s normally a combination of when someone is down, somebody else picks them up,” Lollar said. “It’s going to change week to week during the year, somebody will be a little up and somebody will be a little down, we just hope that the team stays consistent.”
Though the team had a good season last year, after two successful team showings Ben Estes, sophomore of Ozark, Missouri, is feeling confident in the progress this team is making together.
“We all come in here and we do our best every single day and because of it, I feel like we have a much stronger team than last year,” Estes said.
Next on the Rifle team’s schedule is fourth ranked Kentucky. That match will take place at 9 a.m. on Oct. 17 at Pat Spurgin Rifle Range.
“We always look forward to hosting them,” Lollar said. “They’re a class program and Coach (Harry) Mullins will have them ready to shoot when they get here. We enjoy competing against the best.”
After Kentucky, Jacksonville State and Morehead State will come to Murray State Oct. 24 to Pat Spurgin Rifle Range for a conference tri-match.
All three schools were in the preseason top-20 with Jacksonville State at No. 8 and Morehead opening at No. 18. Jacksonville State also attended the Ole Miss Invitational and placed fourth with a score of 4642, just 44 points behind the Racers.
“We’re competing against what our best potential is,” Lollar said. “It’s not where you start at, it’s where you finish at.”