Tech Shooters Begin March Madness In Phoenix

PHOENIX, Ariz. March 5, 2015 – Smallbore rifle competitors from throughout the United States gather in Phoenix for their own version of March Madness – six regional or state championships over six weeks – and the New Mexico Tech Rifle Team was no exception.


Drew Krause receiving his award from match director Mick Walker.


Smallbore rifles are .22 caliber and competitors shoot in the prone position at distances of 50 feet, 50 meters, and 100 yards; iron sights one day and scope the second day. Some competitions last for four days. More information can be found at http://arizona-rifleshooting.com/smallbore.htm.

The course of fire is the Dewar (20 shots at 50 yards, 20 shots at 100 yards), 100 yards (40 shots), 50 meters (40 shots), and 50 yards (40 shots) in the prone position, for a total of 1,600 points and repeated for a second day for a total of 3,200 ponts or over four days for a total of 6,400 points. The 2,400 metric course of fire is using the metric targets with a course of fire of Dewar (20 shots at 50 yards, 20 shots at 100 yards), 100 yards (40 shots), and 50 meters (40 shots), for a total of 1,200 per day or 2400 over two days.

The first championship was the Bobcat 2400 Prone Championship at the Phoenix Rod and Gun Club range at South Mountain, February 21 and 22; 25 shooters competed. The Bobcat is the first of the six championships and fewer shots are fired to get everyone ready for the rest of the season. Tech shooter Andrew Krause won first Expert (ninth place overall). Troy Vigil won second Marksman. Dr. Virginia McLemore, who serves as the team's coach, placed second overall.

The following weekend was the Road Runner 3200 Prone Regional Championship (February 28 and March 1, also at South Mountain). Tech shooter Andrew Krause won second overall, edging out many of the country's top prone shooters, including Coach McLemore who placed fourth. Tech shooters Patrick Ward earned first Sharpshooter medal and Troy Vigil earned first Marksman medal.


The Tech Rifle Team in the prone position at the New Mexico Collegiate Club Sectional.


Vigil will travel to Fort Benning, Ga., on March 19 to 22 for the NRA National Intercollegiate Club Championships, and will miss some of the Phoenix championships! Ten teams and more than 30 of the top collegiate club rifle shooters will be competing at that event.
It is unusual to have so many high caliber championships in six weeks, but the weather in Phoenix is generally excellent during February and March, with only a couple of windy or rainy days, such as this past weekend during the Roadrunner Championship. These championships provide the New Mexico Tech Rifle Team with more than a month of shooting.

The team is currently preparing for the remaining March Madness Championships in Phoenix (Black Widow 3200 Metric, March 7-8; Diamondback 3200, March 13-15, Western Wildcats, March 17-22, and ASRPA 3200 Grand Finale, March 28-29) and additional championships throughout the rest of the year. McLemore and Krause will be competing in the NRA National Smallbore Rifle Championships in Bristol, Ind., in July.

New members of the New Mexico Tech Shooting Sports Club are welcome. The club has regular practice at the New Mexico Tech Gym Classroom every Monday from 5 to 7 p.m. during the fall and spring semesters. And we can still accommodate shooters for the remaining March Madness events!

-- NMT -- 

By Dr. Virginia McLemore/New Mexico Tech