WAYNESBORO — The Statesboro Lady Blue Devils knocked off Burke County and Butler on Thursday in consecutive sets.
Statatesboro defeated Burke County 25-13 and 25-16 in the opener, and closed the day with a two-set win of 25-17 and 25-12 over Butler.
Tess Newton and Chante Branch combined for 10 kills to lead the Devils on the day, and Allie Wallace served up eight aces.
GSU rifle team certified
President Brooks A. Keel and Athletics Director Tom Kleinlein greeted the 2013-14 Georgia Southern rifle team after they were officially certified to begin practice.
The seven-woman team reached the last step in beginning competition Thursday evening when they completed the NCAA certification process prior to taking a team picture with Keel and Kleinlein.
“I am very thankful that Tom Kleinlein and President Keel gave me the opportunity to be the very first rifle coach for Georgia Southern,” head coach Tim Parks said. “I am also very fortunate that retired Col. George Fredrick personally recruited me to be a part of Georgia Southern University's team of professionals. It’s an honor not only to be the head coach of Georgia Southern's ROTC award winning Ranger Challenge team but also to be the head coach of the women’s rifle team.”
Alejandra Shortridge, Becky Collier, Emmy Johnson, Rachel Lewis, Abigail Raines, Kathryn Youndblood and team captain Kaitlyn Witt will form the first rifle squad in Eagle history. Parks will lead this team as they begin their journey as GSU's newest sports team.
“We recruited across campus and sought the best qualified students,” said Parks. “The majority of the ladies where selected from the ROTC program. The rifle team will have the advantage of starting with exceptionally disciplined, highly-professional, and very intelligent students and cadets at its foundation. Our goal in the rangers was to exceed the standard in everything we do and that fits perfectly with TK's mantra of exceeding expectations.”
Those team members selected from the ROTC program bring with them a knowledge of weapons including air rifles which will help them during their first season of competition. Rifle team members Alejandra Shortridge and Kaitlyn Witt also participated in the National Ranger Challenge Competition and shot expert in the weapons competition.
The Eagles will compete in the air rifle discipline during their first season. Air rifle uses a 0.177 caliber pellet, and shooters are 10 meters from the target.
The Eagles will use the shooting range behind the Recreation Activity Center on Register Road as their home facility until the Georgia Southern Shooting Sports Education Center, slated to open in the fall of 2014, is completed.
The Shooting Sports Education Center will be 20,000-25,000 square feet.
designed for future expansion and will include both indoor archery and firing ranges and outdoor archery ranges. The proposed site is adjacent to the Recreation Activity Center and M.C. Anderson Recreation Park on Georgia Southern’s main campus.