UAF rifle falls to Ole Miss in battle between top five programs

Published: Nov. 17, 2020 at 7:56 PM AKST
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - When the dust settled at the Ole Miss Rifle Range, the score was tied 4,697-4,697 between the Alaska Nanooks and the University of Mississippi, leaving the victory up to a tiebreaker. In the end, #5 Alaska fell 309-284 to #3 Ole Miss on X’s, also known as the centered shot ruling.

“I think that we all just really proud we were able to put up a good fight for them and yeah it’s always a bummer when it comes down to Xs," said Alaska Head Coach Will Anti. "Ole Miss as usual shot great and they were able to just edge out the win.”

The centered shots ruling is where the shot goes into the center ring of the target and it doesn’t touch the outer ring. Coach Anti said over the phone that in his 10 years of watching collegiate rifle, this is the only second time he has seen a match come down to tiebreakers. The Nanooks were led by Kellen McAferty and Jessica Boyce with them taking third and fourth on the leaderboard respectively.

Top 10 Leaderboard - Nov. 17, 2020SmallboreAir RifleAggregate
1. Lea Horvath (Ole Miss)5905991189
2. Kristen Derting (Ole Miss)5915901181
3. Kellen McAferty (UAF)5875921179
4. Jessica Boyce (UAF)5825941176
5. Kamila Kisch (Ole Miss)5795971176
6. Erin Walsh (Ole Miss)5805921172
7. Liam Eberhart (UAF)5835871170
8. Daniel Enger (UAF)5795911170
9. Sophia Cuozzo (Ole Miss)5775911168
10. Claire O’Neal (Ole Miss)5785901168

Alaska faced a tough opponent in Ole Miss' Lea Horvath that scored an impressive 599 in the air rifle. The Nanooks opened up a lead after the smallbore relays taking the event with a score of 2,331-2,323 over their foes, however that lead disappeared in the air rifle. Ole Miss won it with a score of 2,374-2,366.

“Today was just had a lot of really solid scores. We didn’t necessarily have that big shiny number,” said Anti after their close loss to Ole Miss. “Instead we had consistency across the board which probably for me is more encouraging long term but certainly hope to get some, you know, those big shiny numbers as we go on.”

The Nanooks finish their 2020 road trip with a match against Georgia Southern University, a program that took down 20th ranked North Georgia over the weekend.

“I think the key for us is going to conjure up the same kind of excitement and energy level that we’ve had for these first three matches.” said Coach Anti.

Their match with the Eagles starts at 5 A.M. Alaska time in Oxford, Mississippi.

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