No. 10 Nebraska vs. No. 18 NC State
Date: Friday, Oct. 5
Start Time: 8 a.m. CDT
Location: Lincoln, Neb.
Venue: NU Rifle Range
Live Stats: Huskers.com
No. 10 Nebraska vs. No. 4 Alaska-Fairbanks
Date: Saturday, Oct. 7
Start Time: 8 a.m. CDT
Location: Lincoln, Neb.
Venue: NU Rifle Range
Live Stats: Huskers.com
The Nebraska rifle team will open the 2012-13 season with matches against the Alaska-Fairbanks Nanooks and the North Carolina State Wolfpack this weekend. The No. 10 Huskers will kick off the weekend against NC State on Friday, Oct. 5 before facing the fourth-ranked Nanooks on Sunday. Both matches are slated for 8 a.m. CDT starts. Free live stats will be made available at huskers.com.
The matches will be the first for NU under the leadership of new head coach Stacy Underwood. Underwood and the Huskers will look to improve on NU's 10-15-1 record in 2011-12. Momentum is in Nebraska's favor, as the Big Red wrapped up last season with a strong third-place showing at the GARC Championships.
The Huskers expect strong leadership from their top returners this season, led by senior Janine Dutton and sophomore Kelsey Hansen. A two-time NRA Honorable-Mention All-American in air rifle, Dutton will look to finish her career at Nebraska on a high note and contend for All-America honors this season. Hansen put together an excellent season in her debut last year at NU, leading the team in combined scoring average at 1,153. Hansen fired her way to career bests in both smallbore and air rifle last season and will be a top contributor in both disciplines for the Huskers in 2012-13.
Scouting the North Carolina State Wolfpack
Head Coach: Keith Miller (23rd year)
2011-12 Record: 26-11
2012 NCAA Finish: N/A
NC State arrives in Lincoln with a preseason ranking of No. 18 nationally after finishing seventh at the Great America Rifle Conference (GARC) Championships last season. The Wolfpack returns five members from last season's squad and will add four newcomers for 2012-13. NC State will be led by sophomore Dani Foster, who in 2012 became the first Wolfpack individual to qualify for the NCAA Championships in 18 years.
Scouting the Alaska-Fairbanks Nanooks
Head Coach: Dan Jordan (Third year)
2011-12 Record: 8-5
2012 NCAA Finish: Third (4,661)
Alaska-Fairbanks returns five team members from last seaon's third-place NCAA squad. The Nanooks tied Kentucky for NCAA runner-up honors in 2012 but lost the eventual tiebreaker. Alaska-Fairbanks received a 2012-13 preseason national ranking of No. 4 and will field a young team this season that includes seven freshmen. All five of Alaska-Fairbanks' returners have previously earned All-America honors in air rifle or smallbore.
Nebraska Adds Four Talented Freshmen to Roster
Four skilled freshman shooters will join the NU roster this season, providing depth in both disciplines for the Big Red. Alexandrea Lorentz, Marissa Major, Denise Martin and Magdalena Mical bring plenty of experience to the Nebraska squad and are expected to compete for spots in the NU lineup immediately.
Lorentz arrives at Nebraska after a successful shooting career at West Anchorage High School in Anchorage, Alaska. She captured MVP honors in 2009, 2010 and 2011 while helping her squad to a 2012 Divisional championship. Lorentz also competed with the Borealis Bullseyes club team, contributing to team finishes of second in 2010 and fifth in 2012 at the Junior Olympics in the Precision Team Championship.
Major shot with the Arvada Rifle and Pistol Club in Arvada, Colo., before committing to Nebraska. She finished first in the NRA Junior Three-Position Air Rifle Precision competition and was the Colorado Rifle Club Smallbore Prone Summer League Winner in the 1000 Handicap.
Martin was a three-time Washington state champion and finished second overall at the USA Shooting National Championships. A native of Chewelah, Wash., Martin was a member of the USA Shooting team at the 2010 International Shooting Sports Federation Junior World Championships. She won the 2009 Junior Olympic Three-Position Air Rifle Precision Class Championship and was a member of the championship-winning Colville Valley Sharp Shooters 4-H Club at the WSRPA/NRA Championships in 2009 and 2011.
The final member of Nebraska's freshman class, Mical finished first in smallbore at the 2011 Florida Junior Olympic Qualifier and was a 2011 Junior Olympic Nationals qualifier. She also finished fourth at the American Legion Three-Position Air Rifle Championship in 2010 and was the Florida Metric Prone State Champion in 2010.
Nebraska Prepares for Loaded Schedule in 2012-13
Nebraska's 2012-13 schedule features a talented array of opponents that will challenge the Huskers. Nebraska will kick off its season with a three-match home stand beginning on Oct. 5, when the Huskers welcome North Carolina State to the NU Rifle Range. The Big Red will wrap up their opening weekend on Oct. 7, competing against Alaska-Fairbanks at home.
Nebraska's final home match of the fall will come on Oct. 13, when the Huskers welcome the 2011 national champion Kentucky Wildcats to Lincoln. The match should serve as an excellent early-season test for the Huskers as they head into a stretch of road matches to close out the fall.
NU will hit the road the following weekend, traveling to Oxford, Miss., to take on the Mississippi Rebels on Oct. 20. The Huskers will then travel north, facing TCU and Ohio State on successive days in Columbus, Ohio. Nebraska will face perennial power and 2012 national champion TCU on Nov. 10, before challenging Ohio State on Nov. 11.
The Huskers will close out their fall slate of matches just one week later, journeying to Colorado Springs, Colo., to face the Air Force Academy Falcons and former Nebraska head coach Launi Meili on Nov. 17.
Nebraska will take an eight-week break before moving into the second half of its season in early 2013. The Huskers will begin on Jan. 12 with a rematch with Meili's Falcons in the friendly confines of the NU Rifle Range.
The Huskers will head east as they continue their spring slate of matches, journeying first to Morgantown, W.V., as they face the West Virginia Mountaineers on Jan. 19. Nebraska will move farther south the following weekend, facing a slate of opponents at the Withrow Invitational in Murray, Ky., on Jan. 27.
Nebraska will return home for its final regular-season match at the NU Rifle Range on Feb. 9. The Huskers will host the Army Black Knights in Lincoln as they prepare for postseason competition.
NU will begin postseason action on Feb. 17, as the Huskers travel to the NCAA Qualifying match in Murray, Ky. The Huskers will be vying for both team and individual spots at the 2013 NCAA Championships. The team will then head south for the 2013 Great America Rifle Conference (GARC) Championships in Oxford, Miss., which will take place on Feb. 22-23.
Nebraska will close its season at the 2013 NCAA Rifle Championships on March 8-9. The championship is slated to take place in Columbus, Ohio at Converse Hall and French Field House.
Stacy Underwood Named Nebraska Rifle Coach
The Nebraska rifle program entered a new era on May 24, 2012 as the team announced former Husker shooter Stacy Underwood as its new head coach. Underwood arrived at Nebraska after spending five years as an assistant coach under Coach Harry Mullins at Kentucky. During her time at Kentucky, Underwood helped the Wildcats to a 48-8 record and five top-five NCAA finishes. UK won the 2011 NCAA Championship while adding one GARC Championship title and two GARC regular-season crowns during Underwood's tenure. Underwood also assisted in the development of 26 All-Americans while at Kentucky.
Prior to her coaching career, Underwood competed for the Nebraska rifle team from 2003 to 2007. She was a four-year letterwinner for NU and a two-time NRA All-American. Underwood was named the GARC Senior of the Year in 2007 and also earned All-GARC honors in air rifle and and combined. A team captain in 2004-05, she helped the Huskers to a third-place NCAA finish that season and a fifth-place finish in 2007.
Underwood graduated from the University of Nebraska in 2007, earning a bachelor's degree in education. She added a master's degree in kinesiology and health promotion from Kentucky in 2009.
Huskers Ranked 10th in CRCA Preseason Poll
The Husker rifle squad earned a No. 10 ranking in the Collegiate Rifle Coaches Association (CRCA) Top 20 Preseason Coaches Poll. The Sept. 8 poll awarded 2012 NCAA Champion TCU the top spot, while Kentucky and West Virginia rounded out the top three.
Nebraska came in at fifth among GARC schools after finishing third at the GARC Championships in 2012. NU trails Kentucky (No. 2), West Virginia (No. 3), Army (No. 5) and Ole Miss (No. 6). The Big Red edged conference members Memphis (No. 14) and North Carolina State (No. 16) in the rankings.
All of Nebraska's non-tournament opponents this season appeared in the rankings, with seven of the nine snagging spots in the top 10. The Huskers will face TCU (No. 1), Kentucky (No. 2), West Virginia (No. 3), Alaska (No. 4), Army (No. 5) and Ole Miss (No. 6) in regular-season action and are also likely to see multiple ranked opponents at the Withrow Invitational in January.