MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin rifle squad wrapped up its opening weekend as it competed in the Memphis Tiger Open and hosted Georgia Southern.
At Memphis, the mixed team posted an aggregate score of 4,606 (2,282 in smallbore and 2,324 in air rifle). That was the second-best score in the last three seasons, trailing only the 4,606 at Memphis last year.
Kaitlin Korinek paced the Skyhawks in smallbore and tied her career high of 579. She also led UT Martin in air rifle with a score of 584. Brianna Sawyers fired a match-high 574 in air rifle for the women’s team. While the women’s team does not have enough smallbore shooters, freshmen Celia Gelpey (555 smallbore) and Kaylen Royal (559 in air rifle) also exhibited great promise over the weekend.
Brigitte Curcio (569), Joe Martin (572) and Alex Tamboli (562) also chipped in for the 2,282 smallbore score for the mixed team while Curcio (580), Martin (582) and Jennifer Plocinik (578) all added to the 2,324 total in air rifle. Ashley Coots (551), Gelpey (544), Royal (559) and Sawyers (574) put together the 2,228 points for the women’s squad in air rifle.
In the home competition against Georgia Southern, the mixed team tallied an aggregate of 4,576 to defeat Georgia Southern’s 4,478.
The mixed team’s aggregate of 4,576 was a product of a strong outing in air rifle with Korinek (583), Curcio (582), Martin (573), Plocinik (573) and Tamboli (563) combining for a score of 2,311. Martin (580), Korinek (567), Plocinik (561), Curcio (557) and Tamboli (543) all combined for a smallbore score of 2,265 for the mixed team.
Sawyers led the way for the women’s team in air rifle with a score of 568. Coots (555), Gelpey (553) and Royal (547) also fired for a total score of 2,223. Coots (551), Sawyers (546) and Gelpey (531) shot smallbore for an unofficial score of 1,628.
“We had three career highs over the weekend,” said UT Martin head coach MJ Vowell. “Our air rifle was really good over the opening weekend. Freshmen Celia Gelpey and Kalen Royal both shot career highs in smallbore and air rifle, respectively, and have gotten off to a great start to the Skyhawk careers. Overall, I am very proud of the team – especially their ability to deal with stress and pressure of the first matches of the season.”
UT Martin continues its fall slate when it travels to Ohio Valley Conference rival Murray State on Sunday, Oct. 1.