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Radford Air Riflery

Radford HS Air Riflery Shoots to Complete Season Well

(Fri) October 26, 2007

Zach Mulrenin (Radford High School)


Air riflery members practice their
sharpshooting skills daily afterschool.
Photo by Zach Mulrenin

It is that time of year. The time of year when students explode with school spirit to support the football team, fund raise for the volleyball team, and observe in awe the acrobatic feats of the cheerleaders as they compete for the championships. However, less celebrated is the Air Riflery team.

Air Riflery is not known for its ability to entertain, explaining why it may not be as popular at Radford High School as other sports.  Nonetheless, its members practice daily for several hours on their shooting skills in order to be competitive.

Concentration plays a large role in aiming and holding the gun steady.  “It’s a very competitive sport,” said Natasha Escamilla (10).  The sport is pretty straightforward. An athlete is equipped with a gun, and the goal is to score higher than the opponent by firing a projectile from the gun and landing it as close to the center, or bullseye, as possible. The shooter may fire only 30 shots; 10 shots while prone (laying down), 10 shots while standing, and 10 shots while kneeling. The maximum score possible is 300 points per shooter. In order to keep scores fair, only the top five shooters for each gender are used to calculate a team’s final score.

“My first year was pretty challenging, but after a year of shooting, you become much more comfortable,” said Lance Gergner (10).

Everyday after school, from 3-5 p.m., shooters practice honing their skills on the range to defeat the competition.

“People say its really easy and all you do is shoot a gun, but it’s actually...hard,” said Michael Forgue (11). “[It] requires you to stay calm which is harder than most people think.”

More than halfway through the season, the Air Riflery team has had its share of difficulties. Currently, this year’s season has the team at three wins and three losses, making them hard-pressed to win the last two matches of the season in order to rank well in the district.



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