Huskers Head for Mississippi in Road Opener
No. 4 Nebraska at No. 7 Ole Miss
Date: Saturday, Oct. 20
Start Time: 8 a.m. CDT
Location: Oxford, Miss.
Venue: Patricia C. Lamar National Guard Readiness Center
Live Stats: OleMissSports.com
The Nebraska rifle team will hit the road for their first match away from the NU rifle range this season, traveling to Oxford, Miss., to face the Ole Miss Rebels. The No. 4 Huskers (2-1, 1-1 GARC) will look to bounce back against the Rebels (3-3) following a home loss last weekend to Kentucky. NU's match with Ole Miss will take place on Saturday, Oct. 20 at 8 a.m. CDT.
The Huskers are 17-4 all-time against Ole Miss, with NU's last win against the Rebels coming at the 2012 GARC Championships. Ole Miss will return six members from its 2011-12 squad, including Abbey Stanec, the 2012 NCAA Individual Runner-Up in air rifle, and Melissa Quartarone, a second-team All-American in smallbore.
Nebraska is 2-1 this season with wins over NC State and Alaska-Fairbanks and a lone loss coming at the hands of Kentucky. A senior, junior and freshman are pacing the Huskers this fall, with Janine Dutton, Sunny Russell and Denise Martin all holding combined averages of 1,160.7 through three matches.
Russell has come on especially strong for the Huskers in her first three appearances this season. The junior from Stratford, Texas is averaging more than 11 points better in smallbore and five points better in air rifle compared to last season. Russell paced the Huskers in smallbore against Kentucky and has competed as a declared team competitor for the Huskers in all three of the team's matches in 2012.
Scouting the Ole Miss Rebels
Head Coach: Valerie Boothe (17th year)
2012-13 Record: 3-3
2012-13 High Score: 4,628 (Ole Miss Invitational)
2012 NCAA Finish: N/A
The Rebels return six members from last season's team that finished fourth at the GARC Championships. Ole Miss is led by junior Abbey Stanec, who was the 2012 NCAA Individual Runner-Up in air rifle. The Rebels also return junior Melissa Quartarone, a second-team All-American in smallbore. Ole Miss opened the season with a second-place finish at the Memphis Tiger Invitational and a third-place showing at the Ole Miss Invitational.
Huskers Fall to Wildcats in Lincoln
The fourth-ranked Nebraska rifle team shot its best score of the season but fell to Kentucky by a score of 4,666-4,643. The Huskers (2-1, 1-1 GARC) hung tight with the Wildcats (1-0, 1-0 GARC) through smallbore competition but were ultimately edged out on the air rifle range. NU was led on the range by junior Sunny Russell in smallbore (581) and senior Janine Dutton in air rifle (590).
The Big Red started its day on the smallbore range, where the team fired its way to a season-best aggregate score of 2,307. Russell paced the Huskers with a 581, nearly matching her career-best mark of 582. Freshman Denise Martin added a season-best 578, while senior Katelyn Woltersdorf posted a mark of 574 on the afternoon.
Following smallbore competition, the Wildcats held a narrow 2,310-2,307 lead over the Huskers. Kentucky was led by Henri Junghanel, who shot an match-best 590 on the smallbore range.
The competition moved to air rifle, where NU put up a team score of 2,336. Dutton's season-best mark of 590 led the way for the Huskers and Russell continued her strong showing on the day with a score of 583. Sophomore Kelsey Hansen picked up a score of 582 and Martin shot her way to a 581 on the afternoon.
Kentucky cemented its victory on the air rifle range, outscoring the Huskers 2,356-2,336. Emily Holsopple led the Wildcats in air rifle, capturing the event title with a score of 592.
Nebraska's Team Scores on the Upswing
Nebraska's 2012-13 season is off to a strong start, as the Huskers are currently averaging a score of 4,640 per match--29 points higher than the team's 2011-12 average.
Even more impressive is the team's scoring averages through three matches from 2011-12 compared to 2012-13. The Huskers are currently averaging 2,303 points per match in smallbore--16 points higher than the smallbore average through the first three matches last season. NU's current air rifle average of 2,336 is more than 26 points higher than the same time last season.
This marked improvement in both disciplines is evident in the Huskers' team scores through three matches. Nebraska's current team scoring average of 4,640 is more than 43 points higher than last season's scoring average through the team's first three matches.
Nebraska Holds Steady at No. 4 Nationally
The Nebraska rifle team remains ranked No. 4 nationally in the Collegiate Rifle Coaches' Association (CRCA) rankings, last released Oct. 8. The Huskers (2-1, 1-1 GARC) went undefeated in their first weekend of action this season and hold wins over NC State and Alaska-Fairbanks. NU's lone loss this season came at the hands of Kentucky.
GARC competitor West Virginia holds the No. 1 position in the poll, with TCU and Jacksonville State appearing at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. The Huskers come in at No. 4, and Alaska-Fairbanks rounds out the top five. Other GARC teams appearing in the poll include Army (No. 6), Ole Miss (No. 7), Memphis (No. 10) and NC State (No. 11).
Up Next for the Huskers
The Huskers will take two weeks off from competition following this weekend's matchup with Ole Miss. NU won't take to the range again until Nov. 10-11, when the Big Red will travel to Columbus, Ohio for a pair of matches at French Field House. Nebraska will face the 2012 NCAA Champion TCU Horned Frogs on Nov. 10 before taking on Ohio State on Nov. 11. Both matches will start at 7 a.m. CST (8 a.m. EST).
Nebraska Adds Four Talented Freshmen to Roster
Four skilled freshman shooters joined 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.
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.