Emily Fisher Leads Robinson Rifle Team, Besting National Record

Besting national records in all categories for Air Rifle, Individual, 3×10, Precision Class, Emily Fisher earned 1st place honors among 192 individual competitors in the December 2016 Blueridge Postal Match, hosted by Rutherfordton-Spindale Central High School in North Carolina. As it was a postal match, with targets mailed in, unfortunately a new national record could not be set. Regardless, Emily’s performance was extraordinary, with a near-perfect score of 298 out of 300, including 26 of 30 bullseyes.

51 teams competed In the precision rifle class. The top 2 teams scored 1156 out of 1200, with number of bullseyes the tie-breaker. 3rd through 5th place teams all scored only 2 points less. Our Robinson HS-1 team of: Emily Fisher, Max Brabston, David Linkh, and Jack Curry finished 4th, edging our Potomac High School League rival, Woodson, by 7 bullseyes.

Our Robinson HS-2 team of: Jamie McCarty, Rayaan Khan, Connor Manuel, and Braeden O’Quinn scored an impressive 1065, with Jamie and Rayaan both scoring in the 580s.

The Robinson HS-3 team of: Jacob Bzdafka, Thomas Nolan, and Erik Huddock were one athlete short, but fired a 756, with Jacob earning his varsity letter with a score of 265.

Congratulations to all our competitors, several of whom fired personal best scores.

Team’s most famous alumni visits practice

After having just returned from competing in Men’s 10m air rifle at the Rio Olympics, Lucas Kozeniesky graciously came to practice with his former high school team, the Robinson Rams, at 6 AM on Saturday, August 13, 2016, at the NRA HQ range.

Athletes and coaches were equally excited by his visit, with several selfies taken with our most famous alum. Those in attendance heard first-hand about competing at the Olympic level, and the thrill of walking in the opening ceremony. Apparently it was quite a walk – over a kilometer – for the procession to get into the stadium.

As we heard, Olympic officials raised an issue a mere 30 minutes before the qualification match was to begin.

Team photo opportunity

They stated that the tape (holding weights) on Lucas’ rifle was not allowed, and had to be removed. After discussion, it was determined that requiring removal of the tape was not in accordance with the rules, but that the weights still had to be removed. During this critical time, Lucas was forced to perform surgery on his rifle to reinstall the weights needed for balance, and could not go through his pre-match preparation routine, as his competitors were doing. As always, Lucas showed courage and perseverance, finishing 21st.

Those following the Women’s 10m air rifle competition may be aware that Sarah Scherer endured a similar ordeal – except she was forced to remove her tape in the brief period between qualification and he final, where she finished eighth (last).

Regardless, we are proud of our Olympians, and thankful to Lucas for giving back to our Robinson Team. Go NC State Wolfpack (a.k.a. Robinson South)!


Robinson Team Members Attend Air Rifle Standing Clinic

Several Robinson Rifle team members attended an advanced clinic in Annapolis, MD July 27-29.

The camp was held in the gym at Annapolis High School, and shot on CMP’s portable electronic targets. This is the same Megalink system that is used at the CMP North and South ranges.

This Advanced Standing Air Rifle Camp traveled around the country this summer and was designed to build on the curriculum taught at the CMP weeklong three-position junior air rifle camps. Participants received three days of
intensive training in the standing position

Dan Durben and Sommer Wood were the camp directors and chief instructors. Both joined the program in 2004.

~Durben is an Olympian, and former U.S. Olympic Rifle and Paralympic Shooting Team Coach. Outside of camps, Durben is a physics professor at Black Hills State University, and the school’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative.

~Wood is a graduate of Clemson University where she competed on the Clemson Air Rifle Team, and earned her MFA from Barry University. She coaches marksmanship, and organizes shooting events year round for CMP as the Camps and Clinics Coordinator.

~Completing the camp staff were a group of accomplished CMP staff members and college rifle team shooters who served as assistant directors, gunsmiths, and camp counselors.

In addition to this top notch set of instructors, the camp material included contributions from speakers who have Olympic and National Team backgrounds.


Robinson Team Members Attend IWLA Air Rifle Clinic

Several Robinson Rifle team members attended a three position clinic at the Isaak Walton League on July 25-29.

The clinic was led by the head coach of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, Richard Hawkins. Coach Hawkins has a long and distinguished history as a coach with top level shooters.  He provided guidance and feedback on the three shooting positions, diet and wellness, mental preparedness, match strategies, and tips about how to shoot at the collegiate level.

Thanks to Coach Hawkins for your time, Coach Kanellis for organizing, the Arlington Fairfax Chapter of the Isaak Walton League staff for hosting, and all the coaches and parents who helped keep the wheels turning that week!


Robinson Rifle Alum earns spot on Team USA for Air Rifle

Team alumnus and rising NC State Wolfpack senior adds another title to his already impressive resume: Olympian.

Photo: USA ShootingLucas Kozeniesky went to the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Airgun, June 3-5, 2016 in Camp Perry, Ohio, charting the top score in the event on Friday and Saturday before turning in another strong performance Sunday to secure a spot on the 2016 Olympic Team.

This final part of the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Airgun consisted of three straight days of Qualification, as well as three separate Finals. Each day’s qualifying scores and points from the event Finals were added to each competitor’s score to get a cumulative total.

Mathematically, he had one of the two Men’s Air Rifle slots locked down prior to the last day’s Final with dominating, world-class Qualification scores each of the three days of competition. His 20 points in the finals sessions were the most by any shooter in the competition.

Lucas finished the competition with a cumulative total of 1902.4, clinching the top spot by more than 18 points (1883.8). He fired scores of 634.5 Friday, 633.5 Saturday and ended strong Sunday at 634.4.

“My confidence level was really high heading into the weekend and I trusted my training, which allowed me to be successful.” He chalks this accomplishment up to his focus on mental management in the weeks leading up to the Trials.

“This is probably the first match where all of my training came together at one point – everything was calculated, everything went well, everything was on call, I knew exactly what was going on the entire time and it was just a really good match,” he said. “That was the goal – I just wanted to have a really good performance and the reality of what was happening didn’t really hit me until 10 shots away from the finish where it was like ‘Oh my God!’ This was probably my best match ever!”

The 2016 Summer Olympics will take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 5 through 21. The dates on which he and his team will compete have not yet been made available.

Info courtesy of NCState and USAShooting. Pictures courtesy of USA Shooting.