First National Champion Titles Awarded; New Members Named to World Championship Team

FORT BENNING, Georgia (June 24, 2014)

The first titles in the USA Shooting National Championships for Rifle and Pistol were awarded today in Fort Benning as National Champions were crowned in Women’s Air Rifle, Standard and Center Fire Pistol, Men’s Junior Sport Pistol and Men’s Three-Position Rifle.

In addition to titles being named on this second day of competition, the roster for the International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) World Championship in September was further fleshed out as five new names were confirmed and added to the roster.

The Men’s Open Pistol team is now complete for the World Championships in September in Granada, Spain as the two non-Olympic Pistol events – Standard and Center Fire – were contested today. Champions in these events were determined by a combined score from two days of competition. This National Championships also served as the Selection Match for these events so representing the United States in Standard Pistol will be National Champion Keith Sanderson (Colorado Springs, Colorado), silver medalist Greg Markowski (U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit/Columbus, Georgia) and bronze medalist Emil Milev (Temple Terrace, Florida).

Two-time Olympian Sanderson and five-time Olympian Milev will also be competing in the Rapid Fire Pistol event for which they qualified back at the Spring Selection Match in May. This World Championship will be the first for Markowski.

Also filling out the Men’s Open Pistol Team in the Center Fire event will be Michael Gasser (USAMU/Columbus, Georgia), who won silver today at the National Championships. He will be joined by Center Fire National Champion Brad Balsley (USAMU/Uniontown, Pennsylvania) and bronze medalist Markowski. Balsley also qualified in May to compete in Rapid Fire Pistol. This World Championship will be Gasser’s first international competition.

In Junior Women’s Air and Junior Men’s Three-Position Rifle, National Championships is part two of an intensive qualification process that began for junior competitors during the 2014 National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships (NJOSC) back in April. The top-three junior team members will be identified following a selection process that included two qualifiers and a final at the NJOSC and another two qualifiers and two finals at National Championships.

Representing the U.S. in Junior Women’s Air Rifle at the World Championship will be Junior National Champion Sonya May (Rockland, Massachusetts), National Champion Dacotah Faught (Amenia, North Dakota) and Minden Miles (Weatherford, Texas).

In Junior Women’s Air Rifle, Faught won the silver medal, but also the Open title.  May won the Junior title and the silver medal in the Open division. Placing third in the Junior division was Heather Kirby (Shelbyville, Kentucky) and third in the Open division was Sarah Beard (Danville, Indiana).

In Men’s Three-Position Rifle, Joe Hein (USAMU/Mason, Michigan) claimed top honors in the Open division, followed by Dempster Christenson (Sioux Falls, South Dakota) and Dan Lowe (USAMU/Olympia, Washington).

Winners in the Open division for both rifle events were determined based on a composite of scores from each day of competition plus additional points for finish in today’s Final.

Winning gold in the Junior division was Garrett Spurgeon (Canton, Missouri). The silver medal went to Tim Sherry (Highlands Ranch, Colorado) and bronze to Lucas Kozeniesky (Southern Pines, North Carolina).

Junior Men’s Sport Pistol also crowned National Champions today with Brian Kim (Los Angeles, California) winning gold, followed by Glenn Zimmerman (Waterville, Ohio) in second and Tony Chung (Diamond Bar, California) in third.

Members of the Junior Men’s Three-Position Rifle and Sport Pistol Teams will be announced at the end of the week.

Men’s and Women’s Air Pistol and Prone Rifle kick off tomorrow with National Champions crowned Thursday. The top-three finishers in the Open division in all Olympic events also earn appointments to the National Team.

For complete scores from the USA Shooting National Championships for Rifle and Pistol, please visit:

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Categories: Press Releases, 2014 ISSF World Championships, 2014 National Championships Rifle/Pistol