The TCU women’s rifle team will compete in a meet against The Citadel Saturday after coming out strong in last weekend's tournaments.
TCU took home a first place title at the Tiger Open in Memphis, with a four-point win (4,652-4,648) over No. 1 Jacksonville State. On Sunday, they finished second and came up seven points short of Jacksonville State at the Ole Miss invite.
In the Tiger Open, the Frogs brought in a 2,300 in smallbore and a 2,352 in air rifle overall. In the Ole Miss Invite, they shot a 2,313 in smallbore and a 2,348 in air rifle.
Rifle head coach Karen Monez said she saw improvement from the women in the second match of the weekend.
“Sometimes [during] the first match of the season nerves factor into performances a little more than usual,” she said. “Because we played back-to-back matches earlier on in the season, I spread them out from Friday to Sunday. It helps them settle down a bit.”
In Memphis, sophomore Hannah Black led TCU in shooting a 581 in smallbore, following with a 589 in air rifle.
Even with “moving floors,” which she described as being able to feel the ground shake when people walked across the floor, Black was able to take home a personal best in smallbore.
“You have to mentally prepare for little things like that that could affect your focus,” she said.
At Ole Miss, sophomore Megan Lee finished first overall in smallbore with a 586. This was a personal best for Lee as she usually shoots in the low 580’s.
“When I go into a match, I always make sure to know what I’m doing and expect nothing less than a win,” she said. “You have to have high expectations.”
First-year international student Sally Li shot in her first collegiate meets this weekend in the international division. In international, the athletes must fire 60 shots instead of 40.
Despite being her first tournament, the Singapore native came out on top for TCU in air rifle (592). She said she came to TCU because of the scholarship she was offered.
“I like how the U.S. emphasizes sports and the universities offer a variety of scholarships,” she said. “Singapore doesn’t have that.”
Black said she hopes to bring back personal scores in the 590’s in air rifle, and 580’s in smallbore at The Citadel this weekend.
The university rifle team is women only, but they compete against co-ed teams in matches throughout the season.
“We can beat the boys,” Black said with a friendly demeanor.
Monez, who is in her 10th coaching season for TCU rifle, said the shooting ranges they go to and the teams they compete against don’t factor into the team’s goals.
“It’s more important that every team member does their personal best no matter where they go or who they’re up against,” she said. “All that matters are the points.”
She said the team would go into the weekend looking to improve the team’s overall score. Their goal is to snag one of the top eight spots at the NCAA Championships.
Although the team is mostly younger this year, seniors Catherine Green and Jaime Dowd have brought leadership and experience to the team, Monez said. Jaime has come the farthest since her freshman year in air rifle.
TCU will face The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina Saturday Oct. 12.