MIT Wins 27th NRA Intercollegiate Pistol Championships
Nagao and Meyer Take Overall Individual National Titles
The 27th NRA Intercollegiate Pistol Championships were held on the historic campus of the U.S. Military Academy, March 13-17. More than 90 shooters represented 16 educational institutions, including four ROTC teams, at this year's championships. When all was said and done, team members from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology defeated the competition with a strong team aggregate score of 6372 to take the national title. This score helped MIT overcome the defending champions from the U.S. Military Academy with a total aggregate score of 6365. The U.S. Naval Academy closed out the awards podium with a final score of 6322. Overall team aggregate scores are a combination of team scores from free, standard and open air pistol events.
When asked about MIT's strategy for this year's championships, Coach Will Hart responded, "We focused on team, rather than individual, performance and, yes, there is a difference. I told the team that there was no need to try to shoot a world record or even a personal best at nationals -- just take one shot at a time and if they did get a personal best, fine. I assured them that even if we only shot our average scores, we would still be on top."
Kyle Nagao of the University of California - Irvine won the overall open individual aggregate title with a combined score of 1631-526 in free, 533 in standard and 572 in open-air pistol. Seth Berglee of Montana State University - Billings outshot his competition for second place with a 1615-524 in free, 538 in standard and 553 in open-air pistol. And MIT's Daipan Lee came in a close third with an overall score of 1614-518 in free, 528 in standard and 568 in open-air pistol.
The women's team championship was won by the U.S. Naval Academy with an overall score of 2704. The Ohio State University followed behind in second with a 2691, and the ladies from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology held on to a close third with a 2690. The women's team championship title is determined by combining the team scores from women's air and sport pistol.
This year's overall women's individual aggregate was won by The Ohio State University's Teresa Meyer with a total score of 935-373 in women's air and 562 in sport pistol. When asked how she trained for the event, Meyer said, "I trained half matches for each event in the order I would shoot in this match." Rachel Florea of the U.S. Naval Academy came in second, shooting a total of 919-359 in women's air and 560 in sport pistol. Diana Nee from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology came in third with an overall individual aggregate of 913-354 in women's air and 559 in sport pistol. The women's overall individual aggregate is determined by adding the women's air and sport pistol events.
For the past couple of years, NRA has recognized the shooter with the highest final. Finals are comprised of the top eight shooters in the free, open-air, women's air, and sport pistol events. Shooters fire 10 rounds on command to determine the final results. Typically, each round is scored in tenths of points instead of whole numbers, like the match itself, with the highest finals score being 109.00. This year's highest final shooter was Daniel Hickok of the U.S. Military Academy with a score of 98.6. This score was fired in the open-air pistol finals bringing Hickok from third place into the gold medal position for the national title.
Each match awards an individual national champion. This year's national individual champions are: Women's Air Pistol, Teresa Meyer, The Ohio State University, 464.9; Women's Sport Pistol, Alexandra Griffeth, Missouri State University, 666; Standard Pistol, Teresa Meyer, The Ohio State University, 548; Free Pistol, Kyle Nagao, University of California - Irvine, 609; and Open-Air Pistol, Daniel Hickok, U.S. Military Academy, 667.6.
NRA also invites the top teams in ROTC every year to participate in the standard pistol event of the championships. Invitations were extended to teams from Texas A&M, The Ohio State University, Jacksonville University and the University of Utah. Kyle Copeland from The Ohio State University won the individual ROTC event with an overall score of 505. Jeffrey Cummings Jr. of Jacksonville University came in second with a 497, and John David Stubbs of Texas A&M completed the awards podium in third with a 491. In the team event, Texas A&M defeated their competition with a score of 1914. Jacksonville University came in second with an 1868, and The Ohio State University came in third with a score of 1765.
Every year since 1936, the NRA has awarded All-Americans to nominated students meeting a set of qualifying criteria. Nominees are chosen based on marksmanship skill, grade point average, coaches' recommendations and leadership qualities. A list of this year's NRA All-Americans and NRA Recognition Awards is below.
For more information on the NRA Intercollegiate Pistol Championships, visit www.nrahq.org or call the NRA Collegiate and Schools Program at (703) 267-1473.