By Lars Dalseide | April 15 2013 15:18

From USA Shooting - 2013 National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships

West Virginia's Garrett Spurgeon accepts second place belt buckle at NRA 2012 Metric Championships
West Virginia's Garrett Spurgeon accepts second place belt buckle at NRA's 2012 Metric Championships
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado - Over 200 of the best junior rifle and pistol shooters have competed in Colorado Springs over the past two weeks during the 2013 National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships. The annual three-week event comes to an end Friday, as the best male junior rifle shooters get set to compete in three events (air, smallbore prone and three-position).

Qualifying for the National competition begins at the state level as State Junior Olympic Championships included competition in 47 states utilizing 80 different USA Shooting clubs. The 2013 competition consisted of over 2,200 individual participants in rifle and pistol events. State champions and those who qualify via high scores are invited to Colorado Springs to compete in the NJSOC. The top-two finishers in each event earn a spot on USA Shooting’s National Junior Team.

In the men’s Three-Position Rifle competition, returning bronze medalist Timothy Sherry (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) looks to add more medals to his collection in an event that will likely have a distinct collegiate flavor with Nanooks, Mountaineers and Wildcats. There are a plethora of top returning athletes that are looking to upset Sherry on his home turf. West Virginia Mountaineer standouts Garrett Spurgeon (Canton, Mo.) and Patrick Sunderman (Farmington, Minn.) both finished just off the podium in 2012 and are looking to change that this year after helping lead WVU to its 15th NCAA Rifle title in March. Connor Davis (Shelbyville, Ky.) turned some heads with his top qualifying score of 588 and will be a top challenger for the returning hopefuls.

Men’s Air Rifle, which begins at 12:00 pm Monday, April 15, has a slew of competitors looking to take their place atop the podium including those prominent names mentioned above. Last year’s champion Tyler Rico (Tucson, Ariz.), who competes for Air Force and runner-up Spurgeon both return for the 2013 competition. Sunderman and Sherry both return to make their push for an elusive medal. Davis again posted the highest qualifying score of 593 and showcased his prowess in this event with a fourth-place finish as a Kentucky freshman at the NCAA Rifle Championships. Davis’ Kentucky teammate, Elijah Ellis (Kingsport, Tenn.), will also be a name to reckon with as the week unfolds.

Men’s Rifle (April 15-19)

April 15-16 – Air

April 17-19 – Smallbore (.22 caliber) Prone & 3P

For complete 2013 NJOSC results, click here: http://bit.ly/ZfxIBR. More information can also be found on the USA Shooting website by clicking on the ‘National Junior Olympic Program’ link located under the ‘Events’ tab.

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