COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Kentucky kicked off the spring season on a strong note, defeating No. 8 Ohio State 4,688-4,623 on Saturday.
“It’s always good to start the spring with a win,” UK head coach Harry Mullins said. “In regards to our scores, we picked up where we left off in the fall. We started really strong in air rifle and kind of ran out of gas towards the end so we’ll definitely work to fix that over next week.”
The Wildcats took an early 36-point lead after smallbore, shooting a 2,326 in the opening event to Ohio State’s 2,290.
Seniors Emily and Aaron Holsopple paced Kentucky in smallbore, with Emily Holsopple shooting a team-best 587, including a 198 in kneeling. Aaron Holsopple followed up with a 583 as a counter in the event.
Sophomore Connor Davis and freshman Sonya May rounded out Kentucky’s aggregate smallbore score. A 582 from Davis and 574 from May bumped the UK aggregate smallbore score to 2,326.
Kentucky continued on in air rifle, shooting a 2,362 in the final event as all five UK counters shot 586 or better.
For the seventh time this season, Davis posted the team high in air rifle, shooting a 593. Emily Holsopple was just a point off of Davis with a 592, her fifth time above 590 this season.
Kirby boosted the air rifle aggregate with a 590, while May and junior Jonathan Pinkel completed the event with a 587 and 586, respectively.
As an individual, junior Elijah Ellis recorded a 591 in air rifle, the third overall air rifle performance of the day.
“Overall, I’m happy with performances from everyone today,” Mullins said. “You can see some learned from camp and I think if some continue to push the envelope then you’ll see results in numbers. It’s great to start the season pushing near 4700. We’ve got room to improve and that’s a positive thing, we are moving in the direction necessary for us to finish where we would like.”
The Buckeyes were led by an 1,171 individual aggregate from Remington Lyman, whose 581 in smallbore and 590 in air rifle were both team bests.