wvu rifle

The reigning national champions returned to action on Sunday after a two month break.

West Virginia University took on the University of Akron at the WVU Rifle Range, defeating the Zips by a final score of 4711-4651. The Mountaineers won both events, taking smallbore by a score of 2334- 2296 and air rifle 2377- 2355.

"I think today was a solid start to the semester… the things we wanted to accomplish, we did," said WVU head coach Jon Hammond. “We saw where we're at, and we have a lot to work on in the coming week. Overall, we're where I expected us to be."

West Virginia took the top three spots in air rifle, with Ginny Thrasher shooting a 598 and taking first. Elizabeth Gratz took second place with a score of 594 and Milica Babic tied for third place with a 593.

Sophomore Morgan Phillips finished in fifth place while redshirt-freshman David Koenders finished in seventh place. Jack Anderson and Noah Barker both shot career highs with scores of 589 and 587, respectively.

Hammond was encouraged by the shooting of both Anderson and Barker.

"Jack and Noah put a lot of work in the last semester and didn't always get the results they wanted," Hammond said. "Today, they showed their progress. This was a good way to start the semester, and it gives them building blocks for rest of way."

In air rifle, WVU took the top three spots as well. Coming in first was Koenders shooting 586 followed by Ginny Thrasher in second with a 585 and Babic coming in third with a 583.

Gratz and Phillips tied each other for fifth place with a score of 580. Anderson shot his career high in air rifle with a 566.

The five Mountaineers that made up the team score were Babic, Gratz, Koenders, Phillips, and Thrasher.

With Sunday’s win, WVU improves to 16-0 all-time against Akron.

Next weekend, West Virginia travels to Alaska to take on No. 10 Mississippi on Saturday and then face off against No. 5 Alaska- Fairbanks on Sunday. Both matches are set to start at noon.

Asst. Sports Editor

Matt is a senior from Cleveland, Ohio majoring in journalism with a double minor in sport communication and sport and exercise psychology. With his time at the DA, he has covered women's tennis, the rifle team, women's soccer, and football.