National Guard shooters battle it out at MAC RegionVI

~North Dakota National Guard team wins the MAC 6 Regionals
by Sgt. 1st Class James McGuire, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

CAMP GUERNSEY JOINT TRAINING CENTER, Wyo. – North Dakota’s Alpha team topped
the standings in the overall team events at the National Guard’s Marksmanship Advisory Council (MAC) Region VI Combat Marksmanship Training Sustainment Exercise, hosted by the Wyoming National Guard at Camp Guernsey Joint Training Center Aug. 17-19.

The NoDak team, comprised of Senior Master Sgt. Wade Swenson, Senior Airman Gavin “Lil” Rook, Sgt. Tyler Goldade and Sgt. Brendan Dean scored 916 points to top South Dakota’s Alpha team of Staff Sgt. Nicholas Dooley, Maj. Justin Aylward, Sgt. 1st Class Clint Sandness and Sgt. Eric Grage who scored 892 points during the weekend for a second-place finish.

Wyoming finished third in the team standings. The Alpha team of Staff Sgt. Brody Staman, Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Edwards, Master Sgt. Glenn Worley and 1st Sgt. Timothy Smith earned 841 points.

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Wyoming’s Alpha team Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Edwards, Master Sgt. Glenn Worley, Staff Sgt. Brody Staman, and 1st Sgt. Timothy Smith earned 841 points to place third in the team standings at the Region VI Combat Marksmanship Training Sustainment Exercise, hosted by the Wyoming National Guard at Camp Guernsey Joint Training Center Aug. 17-19. (Wyoming Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jimmy McGuire) 

The three-day competition pitted National Guard soldiers and airmen from Wyoming, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Alaska and Idaho in shoulder-to-shoulder competition with service-issued rifles and pistols in a range of matches that involved a variety of physical challenges and varied distances.

Wyoming’s A team took first in the Covering Fire competition, topping second-place South Dakota A, and third-place North Dakota A.

Worley placed first in the 100-500 Zero Special match followed by Wyoming teammate Smith and South Dakota’s Staff Sgt. Jory Rogers.

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Master Sgt. Glenn Worley of Wyoming’s Alpha team gets in front of the pack during the Region VI Combat Marksmanship Training Sustainment Exercise, hosted by the Wyoming National Guard at Camp Guernsey Joint Training Center, Aug. 17. Worley and A-team mates Staff Sgt. Brody Staman, Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Edwards, and 1st Sgt. Timothy Smith earned 841 points to place third in the team standings. (Wyoming Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jimmy McGuire)

North Dakota’s Goldade took home the Combat Rifle Individual Aggregate Champion title with 714 points. He was followed by Worley in second and Idaho’s Staff Sgt. Adam Witte. Goldade also won the Close Quarter Battle, followed by Worley in second and Wyoming’s Spc. Bradley Holloway in third.

The Reflexive Fire crown went to Goldade, followed by Senior Airman Rook and Witte. “Lil” Rook topped the individual Combat Pistol standings over Alaska’s Master Sgt. Neal Waltman and Senior Master Sgt. Brian Rook, also of North Dakota.

Like airman Rook, another new shooter had a great Wyoming weekend-Alaska’s Pfc. Dalton Dorn won the Novice Individual Grand Aggregate championship, Individual Novice Combat Pistol, Novice Reflexive Fire, Novice 100-500 Zero Special and took third in the Excellence in Competition behind airman Rook and Idaho’s Master Sgt. Robert Earley, who placed second. Dorn was also named the top pistol shooter in the Novice EIC followed by Spc. Brandin Wendland of North Dakota and Master Sgt. James Seigneur of Alaska.

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North Dakota’s Senior Airman Gavin Rook runs to a firing position at the Region VI Combat Marksmanship Training Sustainment Exercise hosted by the Wyoming National Guard at Camp Guernsey Joint Training Center Aug. 17-19. Senior Airman Rook was among the top shooters over the weekend. (Wyoming Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jimmy McGuire)

Senior Airman Rook earned the Individual Open Grand Aggregate Championship followed by Goldade and Witte. Both Senior Airman Rook and Pfc. Dorn were on top-three teams in the Gen. George Patton Combat Pistol Exercise. Alaska’s Alpha team of Dorn, Master Sgt. James Seigneur, Master Sgt. Neal Waltman and Staff Sgt. Brian Felts took first place with 623 points, followed by North Dakota’s A team with 617 and South Dakota’s Alpha team with a score of 567.

Wyoming has hosted the Region VI competition all but one year since 1997 and did not get any takers when an invitation to host in 2019 was offered by Master Sgt. Morgan Jenkins, Wyoming state marksmanship coordinator and match director. So, it looks like Camp Guernsey will be the place to see some of the Guard’s best hard-charging shooters again next year.

For more photos visit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wyoguard/albums/72157700339960215

 

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MAC 3 Regional competition develops combat effective marksmen through competition

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
The South Carolina National Guard Team was announced the Overall Team Champions during the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship award ceremony honoring the regions best Soldiers and Airmen was held at The Volunteer Training Site, Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. MAC III is comprised of Army and Air National Guard members from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virgin Islands. This is an annual event to promote combat marksmanship and training, and there were 48 competitors representing six of the ten states this year. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

~South Carolina National Guard wins the MAC III Regionals
by Maj. Theresa Austin, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

TULLAHOMA, Tenn. – National Guard Soldiers from six states gathered at the Volunteer Training Site in Tullahoma, Tenn. July 27-28, 2018 to compete in the Marksmanship Advisory Council (MAC) Region Three-Small Arms Championship.

South Carolina took first place overall, while the Kentucky team placed in second and Tennessee placed in third. Kentucky, also, claims the individual open class champion, Sgt. Dwight Bushong, and Georgia claims the individual novice class champion, Sgt. Ryan Machan, and Rifle Excellence in Combat (EIC) Champion, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Caleb Ralston.

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
During the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship award ceremony, the Overall Individual Open Caegory Champions were Sgt. Bushong (1st Place), Spc. Jordan (2ng Place), and Master Sgt. Garcia (3rd Place), which was held at The Volunteer Training Site, Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018.  (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

The first place team consists of Tech. Sgt. Kenvyn Lewis, Air National Guard; Staff Sgt. Patrick Stuckey, Army National Guard; Staff Sgt. Matt David, Army National Guard; and Spc. John Jordan, Army National Guard; all of the South Carolina National Guard. Jordan was, also, the Pistol EIC Champion.

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
During the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship award ceremony, the Overall Individual Open Caegory Champions were Sgt. Machan (1st Place), Chief Warrant Officer two Wadham (2ng Place), and Capt. Peterson (3rd Place), which was held at The Volunteer Training Site, Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

Each MAC Regional Competition and TAG Match holds an EIC event, for pistol and rifle that have their own Gold, Silver and Bronze Badges.

“Many people don’t realize that there are many more prestigious marksmanship badges than the three marksmanship qualification badges, and some of those are the Excellence in Combat (EIC) Badge and Distinguished Shooter,” said Air Force Master Sgt. Mike Brumer, the new Tennessee State Marksmanship Coordinator.

The top three marksmanship badges an individual can earn are Distinguished (International Shooter, Rifleman, and Pistol) according to the Guide to the Wear and Appearance of Army Uniforms and Insignia DA PAM 670–1 chapter 20 paragraph 15.

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
Sgt. Dwight Bushong, with the Kentucky Army National Guard, was declared the Overall Champion-Open Classification at the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship held at the VTS located in Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

“The heritage behind it gives it its level of importance and meaning, and being Distinguished is the pinnacle for a shooter,” Brumer continued.

Distinguished refers to the marksmanship skill level of a shooter, which is determined by an individuals performance over years of competition in the EIC event.

“The EIC program encourages others to become more combat effective and share their knowledge base with others back in their home units who don’t participate,” stated Brumer.

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
Chief Warrant Officer 2 Daniel Wadham, with the Tennessee Army National Guard, participated in the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship held at the VTS located in Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

“It’s not a shooting club, like many think,” continued Brumer referring to marksmanship competitions like the MAC regional. “It’s a developmental program to improve combat effectiveness.”

“A marksmanship event,” he expanded, “is not just a competition it’s a training event. It’s, also, a place where we find new shooters and where we kind of identify those that we seek to go back to their units to become trainers there, but also developmental shooters that we want to spend time and energy on to maybe become State representatives at the Wilson Matches or maybe Camp Perry.”

The National Guard Winston P. Wilson Matches held at Robinson Maneuver Training Center, Ark. and the Civilian Marksmanship Matches held at Camp Perry, Ohio are national level matches that are advanced competitive training events.

“Sgt. Amanda Gentry is a fulltime Army National Guard supply sergeant for the Volunteer Training Site (VTS) in Smyrna, Tenn. and is one of our newest developmental shooters,” said Brumer.

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
Sgt. Amanda Gentry, supply sgt. with the Volunteer Training Site (VTS) of the Tennessee Army National Guard, participated in the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship held at the VTS located in Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. Sgt. Gentry is an up and comer in the Tenn. marksmanship community, who recently became involved in order to help improve the marksmanship skills of the Soldiers who go through the VTS when they are preparing to deploy. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

Not only is she the supply sergeant, but she helps on the many ranges they conduct throughout the year as well.

Soldiers go to the VTS before they go to their pre-mobilization stations, said Gentry. “We have a lot of Soldiers that are deploying that come through there, so I work the range a lot.”

Gentry, being a developmental shooter for Tenn. puts her advanced knowledge to good use in her home unit that not just helps them out, but, also, a multitude of Tenn. Soldiers who go through that training site before they deploy.

“I can bring this back to other Soldiers when I am working the range over there and help them out when they aren’t shooting very well. You learn a lot out here,” she said referring to participating in marksmanship events like the MAC, “that you can bring back to other Soldiers that are about to put it to use.”

2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship
Staff Sgt. Chris Langston, with the Georgia Army National Guard, and Tech. Sgt. Kenvyn Lewis, with the South Carolina Air National Guard, participated in the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Three Championship held at Tullahoma, Tenn. July 28, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

Not only is this practical for Gentry, but, also, enjoyable as a stress reliever.

“Shooting for me is a stress reliever and it’s so out of the ordinary as a supply sergeant,” she shared. “There is a lot of stress behind that and coming here, out of the office, is relaxing, because I can focus on just one thing, instead of a million things at once, learning something new.”

This stress reliever teaches self-control under pressure and helps Soldiers become more combat effective.

Brumer shared a quote about self-control and said, as the new State marksmanship coordinator, he hopes to make it the motto of the Tenn. National Guard Marksmanship Program, because this is what they aspire to.

“A good shot must necessarily be a good man since the essence of good marksmanship is self-control and self-control is the essential quality of a good man.” – President Theodore Roosevelt

For more photos from this event visit us on Flickr.

To find out more about how to participate contact the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center at 501-212-4420/4517/4520 and ng.ar.ararng.mbx.ngmtc@mail.mil or visit us on Facebook.

National Guard Marksmen focus on the front sight in Pennsylvania

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180826-Z-BF582-1052 – With a long history of performing very well in competition, the Pennsylvania Army and Air National Guards took home the titles of first and second place combined arms team aggregate champions, as well as, the first, second and third place combat pistol individual aggregate champions with Capt. James Kistler, Army National Guard, in first place. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

~Pennsylvania Army National Guard wins 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region 2 Championship recipients
by Maj. Theresa Austin, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, North Little Rock, Arkansas – Fifty competitors from Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia Army and Air National Guards came together for a time of learning, camaraderie and competition during the 2018 Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Two (MAC 2) Marksmanship Championships held at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania August 23-26, 2018.

Pennsylvania Army and Air National Guards took home the title of first and second place combined arms team aggregate champions, and they, also, claim the first, second and third place combat pistol individual aggregate champions with Capt. James Kistler, Army National Guard, in first place.

Delaware and Virginia Army National Guards also took home top honors. Spc. Zachary Wilson with Virginia Army National Guard is the combined arms individual aggregate champion and Staff Sgt. Basil Woodall with the Delaware Army National Guard is the combat rifle individual aggregate champion.

It’s not surprising that Pennsylvania performed so well, with their long history of performing very well in competition. Out of all 54 states and territories, Pennsylvania holds the record, 54 recipients, for the highest number of Chief’s 50 Badge recipients dating back to the programs inception in 1971, according to the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center Chief’s 50 program-manager.

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180825-Z-BF582-0536 – Lt. Col. Charles Reinhold with the Virginia Army National Guard takes off ahead of the pack in the Patton Match during the Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Two Championships at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania August 23-26, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

A Chief’s 50 recipient hailing from Pennsylvania was this year’s MAC 2 Regional Championship Director. 1st Lt. Garrett Miller is, also, a member of the U.S. National Guard All Guard Combat Team. He said, “In these [MAC] competitions we have a unique ability to give some units what they usually wouldn’t get any exposure to.”

Capt. Kistler expounded on that saying, “The MAC is the same as last year except we are using M14’s instead of shotguns. There’s a lot of people who aren’t experienced on that rifle, so it’s a level playing field.”

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180826-Z-BF582-0470 – A U.S. Army National Guard Soldier competes in the Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Two Championships at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania August 23-26, 2018. Leveling out the playing field for this year’s MAC 2 Matches was the use of the M14 service rifle that is usually only used by specially trained squad designated marksmen. Instead of a shotgun, the M14 was used during the Bianchi Battle (3-gun match), which many Soldiers enjoyed. (photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

The M14 is a rifle that fires 7.62 mm rounds. In 1959, the M1 Grand was replaced by the M14 as the standard issue rifle for military troops. However, today in the Army this rifle is usually only used by specially trained Soldiers called squad designated marksmen (SDM).

“We have some national match M14’s in our inventory,” said Miller. “We took M14s and M118 ammo to give them additional familiarization with a weapon system that they may not get the chance to shoot. Many units don’t get any real exposure shooting real 7.62 platforms like the M14 that SDM’s get assigned to shoot when they are overseas.”

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180825-Z-BF582-0551 – Master Sgt. Eric Moskel with the Pennsylvania Air National Guard fires the pistol for a team match during Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Two Championships at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania August 23-26, 2018. (photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

Master Sgt. Eric Moskel is extremely knowledgeable on the use of small arms weapon systems. He is a state policeman and a member of the Pennsylvania Air National Guard security forces. Notably this summer, using only iron-sights, he made the President’s 100, placing him among the elite shooters in the nation, which is quite a feat in an of its self, but especially because most competitors today are using scopes on their rifles.

Soldiers and Airmen who have deployed overseas in a force-on-force duty position can tell you that it is stressful and there is a lot of pressure. Master Sgt. Moskel explains how competition helps with training for that type of situation.

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180825-Z-BF582-0578 – U.S. Army National Guard Soldiers use binoculars to inspect the accuracy of their round impacts on the targets in between stages of a pistol match during the Marksmanship Advisory Council Region Two Championships at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania August 23-26, 2018. (Photo by Maj. Theresa Austin/Released)

“Competition adds a level of stress,” said Moskel. “Other than force on force, the best way to add stress to shooting is competition, because if you’re just out there shooting by yourself you don’t have the level of stress that you do when you’re competing against your peers.”

Not many Soldiers or Airmen have the opportunity to use the M14 Service Rifle, and the use of that weapon during this year’s MAC 2 Championship was a unique learning opportunity for all.

~~Results~~

Combined Arms Team Aggregate Champions:

  1. Pennsylvania- Alpha from the Pennsylvania Army National Guard score 2722-47X (Team members: Chief Warrant Officer 4 Richard Jones; Chief Warrant Officer 3 Denver Gillham; Capt. James Kistler; Sgt. 1st Class Scott Sheroky)
  1. Pennsylvania- Bravo from the Pennsylvania Air National Guard score 2568-30X (Team members: Master Sgt. Eric Moskel; Senior Airman Robert Lydic; Staff Sgt. Cory Walker; Tech. Sgt. Shawn McCreary)
  1. Delaware- Alpha from the Delaware Army National Guard score 2562-21X (Team members: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Robert Stike; Staff Sgt. Timothy Gantzhorn; Staff Sgt. Basil Woodall; Sgt. Albert Whitlock)

Combined Arms Individual Aggregate Champion:

  1. Zachary Wilson, Virginia Army National Guard; score 563-10X
  2. Staff Sgt. Basil Woodall, Delaware Army National Guard; score 554-9X
  3. Albert Whitlock, Delaware Army National Guard; score 538-4X

Combat Rifle individual Aggregate Champion:

  1. Staff Sgt. Basil Woodall, Delaware Army National Guard; score 406-6X
  2. Zachary Wilson, Virginia Army National Guard; score 402-4X
  3. 1st Class Justin Clymer, Delaware Army National Guard; score 396-7X

Combat Pistol individual Aggregate Champion:

  1. James Kistler, Pennsylvania Army National Guard; score 175-11X
  2. 1st Class Scott Sheroky, Pennsylvania Army National Guard; score 174-9X
  3. Senior Airman Robert Lydic, Pennsylvania Air National Guard; score 163-4X

National Guard displays lethal skills during United Kingdom Marksmanship Competition

The 2018 Army Reserve Operational Shooting Competition prize giving ceremony
The All Guard International Combat Team pose for a photo with the Fortuna Trophy at the end of the Army Reserve Operational Shooting Competition Prize Giving Ceremony. The team achieved their goal winning this trophy, which is a collective high score of four events and is a long standing competition between the British Reserve and the U.S. National Guard. (LEFT to RIGHT: FRONT- Maj. David Stapp, Sgt. Maxium Nickerson, Sgt. Tyler Goldade, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey. BACK- Col. Marty Curtright, Spc. Jeremy McCombs, Master Sgt. Greg Neiderhiser, Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung, Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan, Capt. Robert Lee, 1st Lt. Garrett Miller.)

Click here for photos from the Matches and Ceremony.

~ 2018 United Kingdom Defence Operational Shooting Competition
by Maj. Theresa Austin, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

NATIONAL SHOOTING CENTRE, BISLEY CAMP, England –The sun beats down on two machine gunners, from Delta and Charlie Team, as they lay prone on the grass providing suppressive fire at enemy targets 600 meters away, while their riflemen sprint forward on line with them completing their eight-man section.

As Charlie team sees the enemy appear, they leap forward into a sprint, moving up and down hills and jumping over trenches to take a prone firing position just 100 meters forward. As soon as they open fire on the enemy, Delta team takes off in a dead sprint maneuvering these same obstacles to move online with them.

Sweat pours as each team member, wearing at least 22 pounds of gear and body armor not including their helmet, weapon and ammunition, continues this explosive bounding forward maneuvering these earthen obstacles until they are 300 meters from the enemy, and within the range of the average Soldier’s marksmanship ability. They continue forward 200 meters, riflemen taking a kneeling firing position and machine gunners prone, as they take out the remainder of the enemy targets with a fierce lethality.

Reminiscent of combat environments, this was just one of over 24 different operational “combat style” shooting matches conducted at the 2018 United Kingdom Defence Operational Shooting Competitions (DefOSC) held June 17-26, 2018 at Bisley Camp and the Army Training Centre Pirbright, Woking, England.

The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
1st Lt. Garrett Miller, All Guard International Combat Team member from Pennsylvania Army National Guard, engages his final targets 100 meters away after having just ran five 100 meter sprints  while engaging targets every 100-200 meters along the way. This was one of several events in the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018.

During the Army Reserve Operational Shooting Competition portion of DefOSC, the National Guard All Guard International Combat Team displayed their lethal skills winning first place in five matches and placing top three in 11 of the 13 matches.

“This competition was challenging and more realistic in regards to combat type shooting than other matches we shoot,” said All Guard Team Member Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, with the Missouri National Guard Joint Forces Headquarters.

“All the events were like combat,” said All Guard Team Member 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, with the 2nd Squadron, 104th Cavalry Regiment Penn. Army National Guard. “Each event was custom tailored to apply competitive pressure to the participants in different ways.”

The 2018
Capt. Robert Lee (center) and Sgt. Brandon Hornung (right), All Guard International Combat Team members, compete in the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018. During this event, the camaraderie that is fostered between the Soldiers of United Kingdom and United States is clearly evident from Capt. Lee’s display of the United Kingdom Flag on his helmet during these matches. Patch swapping is a common practice among competitors.

Being lethal in combat is not an easy task. One of most challenging parts to this competition, similar to combat, was the speed required to move into position and engage the targets.

“The competitors are challenged to sprint 100 meters forward, charge their rifle, obtain a steady position and fire as many rounds as possible at a 100 meter target in just 25 seconds, then remain in position and fire the rest of the remaining rounds of a 20 round magazine in 35 seconds at a 200 meter and 300 meter target. Then from there the match moves right into three more phases without any reprieve,” said Miller as he described the Attack and Reorganize Assessment.

Describing the Urban Contact Assessment event, Richey said “100-300 meter targets would expose themselves for only three or four seconds, during which time we had to go from the standing position to the kneeling position and engage the target.”

As if the speed of movement and target engagement was not enough of a challenge, and ease of movement was further impacted by the pounds of gear and body armor they were required to wear, which is a similar requirement for combat.

The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
Spc. Jeremy McCombs, All Guard International Combat Team member from Colorado Army National Guard, takes cover behind a “hasty firing position” and engages rapidly moving targets 100 meters down range during the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018.

“It was difficult to balance the thrill of charging forward and diving into position, with the need to calmly place shots center mass in each target before the time expired,” said Miller, “oh, and all while wearing body armor, plates, and ten kilograms (22 pounds) of kit.”

“The requirement to wear body armor and gear during the match, greatly increased fatigue throughout the competition and also heart rate during the course of fire,” added Richey.

The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, All Guard International Combat Team member from Missouri Army National Guard, fires his M16 Rifle after running 100 meters to his firing point during the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018. Richey was the winner of the Urban Contact Assessment Match, which tests the Soldiers ability to effectively engage targets with the complication of speed and accuracy using the pistol and rifle.

While the individual aspects of the competition were challenging and combat oriented, the team matches seemed to be most like combat.

“The team matches were most like combat situations,” said Michael Richey, Missouri National Guard. “You had to shoot, move and communicate as a team, which is what you’ll be doing in combat.”

The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung, All Guard International Combat Team member from Illinois Army National Guard, quickly moves from engaging targets in the kneeling position to establish a good firing position in the foxhole during a match in the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018.

Representing the U.S. National Guard All Guard International Combat Team were 10 members and two team managers who included:

  • Maj. David Stapp, team OIC, Arkansas National Guard
  • Master Sgt. Greg Neiderhiser, team NCOIC, Pennsylvania National Guard
  • Capt. Robert Lee, team member, Texas National Guard
  • 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, team member, Pennsylvania National Guard
  • Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Catlin, team member, Colorado National Guard
  • Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan, team member, Iowa National Guard
  • Sgt. 1st Class David Keenom, team member, Tennessee National Guard
  • Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung, team member, Illinois National Guard
  • Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, team member, Missouri National Guard
  • Sgt. Tyler Goldade, team member, North Dakota National Guard
  • Sgt. Maxium Nickerson, team member, Vermont National Guard
  • Spc. Jeremy McCombs, team member, Colorado National Guard
The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competiton
Left to Right: FRONT- Master Sgt. Greg Neiderhiser, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Spc. Jeremy McCombs, Capt. Robert Lee, Sgt. Maxium Nickerson, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Catlin. BACK: Maj. David Stapp, Sgt. 1st Class David Keenom, Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung, Sgt. Tyler Goldade, 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan, Col. Marty Curtright, Staff Sgt. James Carr.

All Guard Team came here with the main goal of winning the Fortuna Trophy, and pushing themselves to their limits, they did that and more.

“The competition for the Fortuna is between the United States National Guard and the British Army Reserve,” said Neiderhiser. “It consists of four matches: the Advance to Contact, Defence Assessment, Pistol Close Quarter Battle, and Urban Contact Assessment-Rifle.”

In addition to the Fortuna Trophy, several other awards were won by the team and individual members:

  • Fire Team Combat Snap Shooting Assessment – Team
  • Fortuna Cup (highest individual aggregate on the Fortuna winning team) – Miller
  • Advance to Contact (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy)- Miller
  • Pistol Close Quarter Combat (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy) – Deugan
  • Urban Contact Assessment (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy) – Richey
  • Fleeting Encounter – McCombs
The 2018 Army Reserve Operational Shooting Competition prize giving ceremony
The National Guard All Guard International Combat Team won the Best International Team Fortuna Trophy as well as five individual trophies during the 2018 Army Reserve Operational Shooting Competition at Bisley Ranges, Pirbright, England June 24, 2018. Awards from LEFT to RIGHT and winner name: Fortuna Cup (highest individual aggregate on the Fortuna winning team) – 1st Lt. Miller, Pistol Close Quarter Combat (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy) – Sgt. 1st Class Deugan, Fire Team Combat Snap Shooting Assessment – Team award, Advance to Contact (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy)- 1st Lt. Miller, Urban Contact Assessment (Contributes to Fortuna Trophy) – Staff Sgt. Richey (Not shown: Fleeting Encounter – Spc. McCombs)

“Winning matches that utilize rifle and pistol show how well-rounded of a shooter you are,” said Richey. “It felt good to win a combined rifle and pistol match.”

“Winning the Fortuna Cup,” said Miller, “is what I consider the highest honor I could possibly achieve at any operational shooting competition, because of the other names that are inscribed on it.”

He continued, “Every year, the trophy is engraved with the winner’s name. There are two names in particular that have great relevance to me, 1st Sgt. Greg Neiderhiser, and Capt. J.R. Treharne. Now Master Sgt. Greg Neiderhiser and Col. J.R. Treharne, have both served as influential coaches and professional mentors to me since I was a young Cadet. I certainly wouldn’t be where I am today as a competitor and a Soldier if it wasn’t for their mentorship. Knowing that my name will be forever displayed next to theirs on that trophy pays special tribute not just to my achievement, but their skill and passion as coaches and professionals.”

The All Guard Team not only accomplished their goal, winning the Fortuna and many other honors, but the most important thing they gained was better combat oriented marksmanship skills and knowledge to bring back to the U.S.

The 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
Capt. Robert Lee, All Guard International Combat Team member from Texas Army National Guard, engages targets from various shooting positions seen here: the log, the metal arch, the rock pit and the broken wall during on one of the matches in the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018.

“This competition helps us validate our training methods and strategies,” said Miller.

“Soldiers from all ranks, MOS’s, status and levels, attend and try their best. This multi-echelon exposure allows everyone to progress much faster than they normally would with just isolated training back at their home unit. Here they can pick and choose tactics and techniques they observe from Soldiers standing right next to them on the firing line and bring those back to their home unit. “

“This competition was challenging and more realistic in regards to combat type shooting than other matches we shoot,” said Richey. “Our team participating in this competition enables us to bring that challenging and realistic style of shooing back to our respective states.”

2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition
Sgt. Maxium Nickerson, All Guard International Combat Team member from Vermont Army National Guard, reviews his targets and scorecard with the United Kingdom Soldier after the Urban Contact Assessment Matchin the 2018 UK Defence Operational Shooting Competition that was held jointly at Bisley Camp and the Army Reserve Training Centre Pirbright, England during June 12-26, 2018. This specific match required the Soldier to fire with rifle while advancing and shooting from the standing and squatting positions and then switch to the pistol while continuing to advance towards the target.

These competitions are training multipliers that need more attention and participation.

“This is a powerful tool that goes under-appreciated because some units and naive commanders call these small competitions “shooting clubs” and restrict attendance, because they don’t see the real training and exposure they provide,” said Miller. “Sharing these ideas through open competitions creates positive trends in developing marksmanship that spreads ten fold faster than it would just trickling down through a traditional training progression.”

To find out more about how to participate contact the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center at 501-212-4420/4517/4520 and ng.ar.ararng.mbx.ngmtc@mail.mil or visit us on Facebook.

AFSAM 2018 Results-training with allies

~ 27th AFSAM Small Arms Championship Results

By Spc. Patrik Orcutt, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. —The 27th Armed Forces Skills at Arms Meeting (AFSAM) a multi-national inter-service small arms championship was held from April 29 – May 4, 2018.

The 2018 matches boasted more then 360 competitors with teams from the National Guard, United Kingdom, Canada and Italy. Competitors engaged their targets with various weapon systems including the M9, G17 and P226 pistols, M16, M4, SA80 and C7A2 rifles and M500 Shotguns.  Each four-man team was evaluated on field firing, advanced marksmanship and target engagement. All of the matches were designed to focus on the fundamentals of marksmanship while implementing the stress and physical activity of combat between service members.

Established in 1991, the Armed Forces Skills at Arms Meeting (AFSAM) is a multinational competition that was created to promote marksmanship training and competition between United States military forces and allied nations.

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Military members from the United States, Canada, Italy, and the United Kingdom compete for the 47th Winston P. Wilson (WPW) and 27th Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meet (AFSAM) at Robinson Maneuver Training Center, Ark, 2018. The annual events, hosted by the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center (NGMTC), offer Servicemembers from the National Guard and international community an opportunity to test marksmanship skills in a battle-focused environment.

The international marksmanship exchange program offers shooters from the U. S. and allied nations an opportunity to test marksmanship skills and weapons systems in battle-focused training events. This meeting affords opportunities for cross training on the host nation’s weapons, systems, techniques, tactics, and procedures.

“Participation in these events can provide opportunities to expose traditional Guardsmen to advanced tactics, techniques and procedures used by allied foreign military forces and active duty units,” said Maj. David Stapp, Chief of Operations for the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center, which hosts the events.

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Military members from the United States, Canada, Italy, and the United Kingdom compete for the 47th Winston P. Wilson (WPW) and 27th Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meet (AFSAM) at Robinson Maneuver Training Center, Ark, 2018. The annual events, hosted by the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center (NGMTC), offer Servicemembers from the National Guard and international community an opportunity to test marksmanship skills in a battle-focused environment.

The competition is the perfect forum to allow information sharing between skilled marksmen from multiple countries. “As competitive as they are, the matches aren’t solely about defining who is the best,” said Lt. Col. Todd C. Stuff, NGMTC Administrative Officer. “Ultimately, the focus is on training…. When the best marksmen from around the globe come together,” Stuff continued, “they bring with them valuable experience and insight which they enthusiastically share with their fellow warriors. The shooters then take what they learn back to their units and pass along their new skills.”

The shared information helps improve all the participants’ home country’s marksmanship programs.  “We are happy to compete, Its a wonderful experience for us, said Alessandro De Santis an Italian Army Marshal with the Folgore Brigade. “Every job has its special tools, you need to practice with them to be effective, our tools are weapons.”

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For many soldiers, the competition presents a special opportunity to spend more time with their weapon system.“This is the most range time we get all year,” said Sgt. Dustin Fox, a 214th MP with the Alabama Alpha team.

“Marksmanship first” is more then just a motto for many of these competitors. “Marksmanship should be your first soldier skill, if you can’t shoot and kill the enemy, what good are you?,”  said Warrant Officer 3 Kim Ralston, a coach for the Mississippi teams.

Since 1991, the AFSAM competition has been bringing together some of the best shooters the world’s armies have to offer. AFSAM continues to bring America and its NATO allies closer together one shot at a time.

180503-Z-JY390-464RESULTS:

Grand Aggregate Individual

Champion: Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 1778 with 24x’s

Overall 2nd place: Sgt. Brandon Swanson, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 1761 with 21x’s

Overall 3rd place: 1st Sgt. James Phelps, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score 1743 with 20x’s

 

Individual Rifle

Champion: Master Sgt. Nathan Watters, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 970 with 9x’s

2nd  place: Sgt. Brandon Swanson, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 969 with 11x’s

3rd place: Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 968 12x’s

 

Individual Pistol

Champion: Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 810 with 13 x’s

2nd place: Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Bravo, combined score of 798 with 11 x’s

3rd place: 1st Sgt. James Phelps, U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha, combined score of 798 with 10 x’s

WPW, AFSAM Small Arms enter day two of competition
2018 International Team Champions “Match 380” – U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha with a combined score of 1708 (Left to Right: Sgt. Brandon Swanson, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Master Sgt. Nathan Watters, 1st Sgt. James Phelps, Lt. Gen. Timothy Kadavy)

International Team Champions “Match 380

Champion: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha (Sgt. Brandon Swanson, 1st Sgt. James Phelps, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Master Sgt. Nathan Watters) combined score of 1708

2nd place: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Charlie (Spc. Jeremy McCombs, Sgt. Maxim Nickerson, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Catlin, Capt. Robert Lee) combined score of 1657

3rd place: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Bravo (Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung, 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, Chief Master Sgt. Edward Altmeyer, Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan) combined score of 1636

 

Overall Team Rifle “Match 350”

Champion: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha (Sgt. Brandon Swanson, 1st Sgt. James Phelps, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung) combined score of 2502

2nd place:U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Bravo (Spc. Jeremy McCombs, 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, Capt. Robert Lee, Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan) combined score of 2409

3rd place: Canadian Red (Warrant Officer Luke Foster, Cpl. Michael Pelley, Cpl. James Cameron, Pvt. Evan Trask) combined score of 2391

 

Overall Team Pistol “Match 250”

Champion: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Alpha (Sgt. Brandon Swanson, 1st Sgt. James Phelps, Staff Sgt. Michael Richey, Staff Sgt. Brandon Hornung) combined score of 3227

2nd place: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Bravo (Sgt. 1st Class Paul Deugan, Spc. Jeremy McCombs, 1st Lt. Garrett Miller, Capt. Robert Lee) combined score of 2933  

3rd place: U.S. National Guard All Guard Team Charlie (Sgt. 1st Class David Keenom, Sgt. Maxim Nickerson, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Catlin, Sgt. Tyler Goldade) combined score of 2731

 

For the full results, and more information about AFSAM and the NGMTC visit weebly.

Take a look at the video link below to view some of the training conducted at this year’s AFSAM Championships. Also, for more information about getting involved, contact 501-212-4520 or visit us on the web at https://ngmtc.wordpress.com.

2018 AFSAM in Review Video

2018 WPW participant update

20180412 WPW Participation 2018 #5

 

Currently there are only eight states that have not said they are attending this year out of the 54 States and Territories.

Periodically this map will be updated to reflect the current commitments to participate in this year’s 2018 Winston P. Wilson Small Arms Championships. So check back here.

For more info on the matches click here.

 

2018 WPW: Half way to goal

20180321 WPW Participation 2018 #3by Theresa Austin, Maj. National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – Last year, 53 states and territories confirmed to participate in the 47th Annual Winston P. Wilson (WPW) National Championships prior to moving the matches due to the possibility of a government shutdown, and we are now half way to the goal of all participating this year.

As of Mar. 22, 2018, the National Guard is half way towards the goal with 30 states and territories confirmed participation out of all 54. Not only do we host the national matches, but also concurrently, a multi-national competition drawing in competitors from across the globe.

WPW is a training opportunity, hosted by the NGMTC each year, which is held concurrently with NGB’s multi-national competition the Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meeting (AFSAM). AFSAM currently has Canada, United Kingdom, Italy, and Poland competing as well as other military components such as the U.S. Army Reserve, and U.S. Army 7th Infantry Division.

Change your state from red to green by contacting us. All you need is a four-man team, which NGMTC will pay to attend.

The intent behind these competitions is learning to be a better marksmen, and with the additional focus of WPW being that these competitors take this knowledge and share it with others in their home units. Every competition is a training opportunity, with the ultimate goal of increasing weapons familiarization and skill for increased battlefield survivability and combat readiness.

 

WPW: You play, America wins

NGMTC WPW Participation 2018
by Kathrine Grandori, Sgt. National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. – The Winston P. Wilson National Championships at the National Guard Marksmanship Training Center will begin in April 2018. Several states have already submitted their letters of intent (LOI), as of March 3, 2018, and the goal is to have all 50 states and territories participate.

Many may think that this competition is only valuable as a “play to win,” but when it comes to marksmanship in the National Guard, we must “train to win.” Every competition is an opportunity to increase readiness and learn new skills. Marksmen always learn from other participants and improve their skills. That knowledge will return to their home states and fellow service members.

The NGMTC will be tracking confirmations to attend on this map. Be proactive with your marksmanship program and help NGMTC achieve the goal of participation across all 50 states and territories in 2018. Contact your state marksmanship training coordinator (SMC) or marksmanship regional coordinator (MAC) to get involved.

Click here for more information on 2018 WPW Sniper, Machine gun, and small arms, as well as AFSAM and CNGB.

2018 WPW, AFSAM, & CNGB

by Major Theresa Austin, public affairs officer National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

ROBINSON MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. -This year’s marksmanship championships information has been released for service members to begin signing up to attend.

WPW & AFSAM Sniper Championship: 20-26 April 2018 (Fort Chaffee, AR)
Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meeting: 24 April-04 May 2018 (RMTC, N. Little Rock, AR)
WPW Small Arms Championship: 28 April-03 May 2018 (RMTC, N. Little Rock, AR)
WPW Machine Gun Championship: 15-21 April 2018 (RMTC, N. Little Rock, AR)
CNGB Postal Phase III: 20-25 May 2018 (RMTC, N. Little Rock, AR)

The Official Match Programs are linked above for release (Machine Gun posted 2/26/18).  RFO (request for orders) has been updated; see link below. Click each competition above for the OMP.

We are now accepting Letters of Intent (LOI) for team participation; the dead-lines are below:

WPW Sniper & AFSAM – LOI due 1 March 2018    Pre-registration 20 March 2018
WPW & AFSAM Small Arms – LOI due 1 March 2018    Pre-registration 1 April 2018
WPW Machine Gun – LOI due 20 March 2018    Pre-registration 1 April 2018
CNGB – match scores and targets be submitted until 1 April 2018

Contact your State Marksmanship Coordinator for more information on attending these National Guard premier marksmanship competitions.

RFO (request for orders) as of Jan. 2018

2017 MAC 1 & 2 Marksmanship Championships

Vermont Guardsmen outshoot rest of regions 1 & 2 in marksman competition
~Over 100 Soldiers and Airmen compete in the MAC Regional Eastern Conference

By Sgt. Joshua Frick, National Guard Marksmanship Training Center

Event Photos      Ceremony Photos     Results

FORT INDIANTOWN GAP, Pennsylvania – The National Guard held the Marksmanship Advisory Council region one and two small arms championship at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania near Hershey, Pennsylvania 24-27 August 2017.

National Guard Soldiers from Vermont Team Alpha took 1st Place in the overall competition, and Pennsylvania National Guard natives Team Alpha took home 2nd place overall. They competed against 112 fellow Guardsmen from 21 teams over 4 days for the honors.

The training offers shooters a chance to train in the operationalization of shooting, engaging targets from multiple positions, including the sitting, kneeling, standing, moving and running positions.

During the four-day competition, the competitors shot over 20,000 rounds of 5.56mm and 12,000 rounds of 9mm ammunition.

While the championship offered the teams a chance at a little friendly, inter-state rivalry, the training value and camaraderie gained during the matches is immeasurable.

For some of these Soldiers, it doesn’t end at being a prime marksman and just competing in shooting competitions. A select number of them are, also, mentors that teach advanced marksmanship skills to Soldiers and Airmen across the nation as experts in the small arms weapons field.

Most of these Soldiers spend their own time, money and fuel to go out and practice on their own for these competitions. Getting to see their improvement over the course of these matches and getting rewarded for placing in the top percentile for their efforts is a great thing. These improvements are often lessons learned from the past that they can then take back to their units and can be taught to improve unit operational readiness.

MAC 1 SCORES

Team Grand Aggregate Champions

  1. Vermont, Team A
  2. New Hampshire, Team A
  3. Vermont, Team B

Rifle Team Aggregate Champions

  1. Vermont, Team A
  2. Massachusetts, Team B
  3. New Hampshire, Team A

Pistol Team Aggregate Champions

  1. Vermont, Team A
  2. Vermont, Team B
  3. New Hampshire, Team A

Individual Pistol-Rifle NOVICE

  1. SPC John Walsh, Maine
  2. SPC Lucas Duncan, New Hampshire
  3. SSgt Patrick Glennon, Connecticut

Individual Pistol-Rifle OPEN

  1. SGT Maxim Nickerson, Vermont
  2. SGT Robert Tucker, Vermont
  3. SFC Peter Uliana, Massachusetts

Individual Rifle Champion NOVICE

  1. SPC John Walsh, Maine
  2. SSgt Patrick Glennon, Connecticut
  3. MSG James Kendall, New Hampshire

Individual Rifle Champion OPEN

  1. SGT Maxim Nickerson, Vermont
  2. SGT Robert Tucker, Vermont
  3. SFC Peter Uliana, Massachusetts

Individual Pistol Champion NOVICE

  1. SPC John Walsh, Maine
  2. SSgt Robert Marciniak, Vermont
  3. SFC Richard Saffo, Vermont

Individual Pistol Champion OPEN

  1. SGT Robert Tucker, Vermont
  2. SGT Maxim Nickerson, Vermont
  3. SSgt Justin Oddy, Vermont

MAC 2 SCORES

Team Grand Aggregate Champions

  1. Pennsylvania, Team A
  2. Virginia, Team A
  3. Delaware, Team B

Rifle Team Aggregate Champions

  1. Virginia, Team A
  2. Pennsylvania, Team A
  3. Delaware, Team B

Pistol Team Aggregate Champions

  1. Pennsylvania, Team A
  2. Virginia, Team A
  3. Delaware, Team A

Individual Pistol-Rifle NOVICE

  1. SGT Albert Whitlock, Delaware
  2. SSG Lawrence Smithson, Virginia
  3. SSG Sean Kelly, Pennsylvania

Individual Pistol-Rifle OPEN

  1. SMSgt Edward Altmeyer, Pennsylvania
  2. LTC Phillip Peters, Pennsylvania
  3. SGT Alexandra Wilson, Virginia

Individual Rifle Champion NOVICE

  1. SGT Albert Whitlock, Delaware
  2. SGT Lloyd Layfield, Delaware
  3. SSG Lawrence Smithson, Virginia

Individual Rifle Champion OPEN

  1. SMSgt Edward Altmeyer, Pennsylvania
  2. SGT John Miller, Virginia
  3. SSG Lee Beauchamp, Delaware

Individual Pistol Champion NOVICE

  1. SSG Lawrence Smithson, Virginia
  2. SGT Albert Whitlock, Delaware
  3. Sr Airman Robert Lydic, Pennsylvania

Individual Pistol Champion OPEN

  1. SMSgt Edward Altmeyer, Pennsylvania
  2. LTC Phillip Peters, Pennsylvania
  3. SGT Alexandra Wilson, Virginia

 

EASTERN CONFERENCE “SUPER MAC” SCORES

Rifle Team Champion

  1. Virginia, Team A, MAC 2
  2. Pennsylvania, Team A, MAC 2
  3. Vermont, Team A, MAC 1

Pistol Team Champion

  1. Pennsylvania, Team A, MAC 2
  2. Vermont, Team A, MAC 1
  3. Virginia, Team A, MAC 2

Individual Pistol-Rifle Aggregate Champion

  1. SMSgt Edward Altmeyer, Pennsylvania, MAC 2
  2. SGT Maxim Nickerson, Vermont, MAC 1
  3. SGT Robert Tucker, Vermont, MAC 1

Team Pistol-Rifle Aggregate Champion

  1. Pennsylvania, Team A, MAC 2
  2. Vermont, Team A, MAC 1
  3. Virginia, Team A, MAC 2