USA Shooting Team Gears Up for World Cup USA

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (May 8, 2015)

The Rifle and Pistol athletes of the USA Shooting Team hope there’s a home-country advantage when the second International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) World Cup of the season returns to the United States May 11-19 in Fort Benning, Georgia.

With each of the 74 nations to be represented at this World Cup, the 585 athletes that will compete represent everything from numerous Olympic and World Cup-medal winners; to newer athletes on the scene looking to earn their Minimum Qualifying Scores (MQS).

Leading the 38-member USA Shooting Team will be 26-time World Cup medalist Matt Emmons (Browns Mills, New Jersey, pictured), who won gold in Men’s Prone and silver in Men’s Three-Position Rifle in the first ISSF World Cup of the season in Changwon, South Korea. At that match, Emmons also picked up the Olympic quota in Men’s Prone Rifle. Eric Uptagrafft (U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit/Phenix City, Alabama) finished fifth in Men’s Prone in Changwon so look for strong performances from him and his USAMU teammate Michael McPhail (Darlington, Wisconsin) on their home range as they compete for medals and that second Prone Rifle quota.

Winning Olympic quotas at these events is of utmost importance for the USA Shooting Team with limited opportunities to do so available throughout 2015.  A quota spot is essentially the entry ticket necessary for a country to compete in Olympic competition in a particular discipline. USA Shooting athletes winning Olympic quotas will still have to earn the right to compete in the Olympic Games separately. Thus far in the Rifle and Pistol events, the U.S. has only earned one quota each in Men’s Air Rifle, Men’s Air Pistol and Men’s Prone Rifle, with the potential to earn up to an additional 17 for the U.S. prior to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. More information on selection procedures and quotas for 2015 World Cups and the 2016 Olympic Games can be found here.

The youngest member of the USA Shooting team at this World Cup – 16-year-old Elizabeth Marsh (Searcy, Arkansas) - could also be a formidable rifle force as she joins her mentor Emmons in this match. She swept the Women’s Rifle events at the National Junior Olympic Championships just two weeks ago, and earlier this year, finished just behind her Women’s Air Rifle teammates Sarah Beard (Danville, Indiana) and Amy Sowash (Richmond, Kentucky) at the Rocky Mountain Rifle Championships.  Look for these two to also put up strong performances as Sowash set a new National Record (419.8) in Qualification during the Airgun Selection Match and Beard ended up winning the event.

Will Brown (Twin Falls, Idaho) has already earned a quota in Men’s Air Pistol and continues to prove he’s one of the strongest American men in international-style pistol. He won the Free Pistol selection by 33 points and Men’s Air Pistol by 18 points in the Airgun Selection Match last month. Olympian Nick Mowrer (Butte, Montana) will also compete in the Men’s Air and Free Pistol disciplines.

Keith Sanderson (Colorado Springs, Colorado) won the lone American gold of the 2014 World Cup in Fort Benning and he’ll look to repeat as he returns in Men’s Rapid Fire Pistol. At the February selection match, he equaled a World Record of 35/40 hits during the Final. Sanderson will be joined in the event by 15-time World Cup medalist Emil Milev (Temple Terrace, Florida) and USAMU’s Brad Balsley (Uniontown, Pennsylvania). 

Airgun athletes for this match were chosen at the Selection Match in Anniston, Alabama in April and smallbore athletes were selected through combined scores from selection matches in Colorado Springs and Fort Benning earlier this year.

View live results on the ISSF website: . Be sure to follow @USAShooting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and #WCUSA15 for live coverage of the event from USA Shooting.

ISSF World Cup for Rifle/Pistol
May 11 – 19, Fort Benning, Georgia
Full schedule

May 13: Men’s Air Rifle, Women’s Sport Pistol

May 14: Men’s Free Pistol and Women’s Air Rifle

May 15: Men’s Prone Rifle

May 16: Women’s Air Pistol, Men’s Rapid Fire Pistol

May 17: Women’s Three-Position Rifle

May 18: Men’s Three Position Rifle and Men’s Air Pistol

Categories: Press Releases, World Cup 2015