Sanderson Wins Sixth Rapid Fire Pistol National Title


Keith Sanderson earned his sixth national title in eight tries in Rapid Fire Pistol.At this rate, USA Shooting will be renaming the National Championship trophy for Rapid Fire Pistol in honor of Keith Sanderson.  He simply has owned it for the last decade and Monday was no different in Fort Benning, Georgia as he won his sixth national title since 2004 to highlight the fifth day of the USA Shooting National Championships.

Sanderson defeated Emil Milev (Temple Terrace, Florida) by seven total points over the two-day event.  U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit’s (USAMU) Brad Balsley (Uniontown, Pennsylvania) was third overall. 

Sanderson earned the Olympic quota for USA Shooting earlier this month in Munich, Germany with a silver-medal finish.  Sanderson’s medal haul at Nationals would be significantly higher had he not sat out three straight events from 2009-2011. He’s never finished lower than second in any of the eight championships he’s competed in.

Milev’s performance was equally impressive after struggling with his consistency and scores for the better part of the last year. The five-time Olympian’s  score of 585 on successive days are the type of performance he’ll need to try and earn another quota spot for the USA as he sets his sights on the upcoming Pan American Games next month and the World Cup in Azerbaijan in August.

Tony Chung (Diamond Bar, California) earned the title in the junior competition followed by Glenn Zimmerman (Waterville, Ohio) and Kevin Bennett (Belmont, Massachusetts). 

Also competed Monday was the first of two days in Men’s Air and Women’s Three-Position Rifle.  Amy Sowash (Richmond, Kentucky) holds a slight two-point advantage over Sarah Beard (Danville, Indiana) in Three-Position Rifle.  Sowash was the high scorer in qualification with a 587/600, followed by Beard.  Beard, however, finished first during the day one final over Sowash.  Erin McNeil (USAMU/Fort Wayne, Indiana) sits in third. Five of the eight finalists were junior shooters.

The top qualifying mark and a finals win has Dempster Christenson (Sioux Falls, South Dakota) leading Men’s Air rifle. Dan Lowe (USAMU/Olympia, Washington) sits in second followed by Ryan Anderson (Wasilla, Alaska).

Along with a conclusion of rifle events at the USA Shooting National Championships, Tuesday’s competition schedule also includes the start of Women’s Sport and Men’s Free Pistol events.

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Categories: Press Releases, 2015 USA Shooting Rifle/Pistol National Championships