RI: Open 3P Sectional Results

The 2012 Rhode Island NRA Indoor Metric Position Sectional
by Digby Hand

The youth movement was on a real tear at the Massasoit Gun Club over the last weekend in January as a trio of youngsters dominated the tournament.

Shooting 40 shots in each of prone, standing, and kneeling on the demanding NRA/USAS 50 target Mackenzie Martin, Zachary Connell, and Brian Jylkka sewed up the top three places in the aggregate.

Bob Lynn, a senior shooter from New Hampshire jumped out to a quick lead with an excellent 397X400 prone. Martin was close on his heels with a 395X400 just two points ahead of Jylkka’s 393X400 which rounded out the top three. Jylkka was tied with Bay Stater Erik Hoskins but took third on a tie breaker.

Connell stormed back from a disappointing 387X400 prone with an outstanding 370X400 standing. Martin, who has been turning in excellent standing scores this season, shot a 366X400 as Jylkka stayed in contention with a 360X400, breathing down his neck was Hoskins who posted a 355X400. Hap Rocketto was hanging on by his finger nails with a 351X400.

Going into kneeling, the final stage, Martin held a four point lead over Connell, eight on Jylkka, 13 over Hoskins and full 20 ahead of Rocketto. Seeing the handwriting on the wall Rocketto grinned and remarked that he needed to shoot 42 tens to even have a chance over overtaking Martin.

The kneeling targets were followed with close attention by the gallery Martin and Connell stayed in first and second as both carded 95s, Jylkka slipped two more point s behind the leaders with a 93 and the bottom dropped out of Hoskins’ grocery bag with an 89. Showing his mettle Hoskins battled back with a 97 to Martin’s 96 while Connell shot a 93 and Jylkka a 90.

As the targets were being changed for the second stage of keeling the results of the first half showed that Martin had picked up a point on Connell. Likewise Hoskins had gained five points on Jylkka. Martin now had a little more breathing space and a race was developing for third place as Hoskins had a three point lead over Jylkka in the stage.

Martin all but shut the door on everyone with a 99 on her first target. Connell’s 96 was good but still left him in the dust. Jylkka had a 96 to Hoskins’ 94 and climbed to within one point but, when they both turned in 95s on the last target Hoskins took third kneeling. The final ten shots saw no change in the lead as both Martin and Connell fires 94s and Hoskins and Jylkka posted 95s. Martin took kneeling with a 384, Connell was second on the strength of his 378 while Hoskins pulled out a one point victory of Jylkka.

However, the hotly contested kneeling stage did little to change to overall picture. Mackenzie Martin earned a gold medal with a score of 1145X1200. Connell recovered from a substandard prone and was the silver medalist with an 1135. Jylkka gave truth to the old shooters’ saying that you lose matches prone and win them standing. He took bronze by four points on the strength of his standing score as he tied Hoskins in prone and lost to him by one kneeling.

Hoskins, Joe Graff, Tom McGurl, and Paul Falcone were first master, expert, sharpshooter, and marksman respectively. Jarred Dassler was the high junior and Kerri Lewis high lady. Rocketto took senior honors.

Taunton Marksmanship Unit easily won the paper team match as three of the top four individual scores, Martin Connell, and Hoskins joined up with Brendan Whitaker for 4487, light years ahead of Digby Hand, Rocketto, Graf, Lynn, and McGurl-although it is interesting to note that all of that team, but Graf, are 60 years of age or older, and the Hudson New Hampshire Juniors, Dassler, Jylkka, John Cialek, and Zack Wambganss.

The match was well administered by Match Director Nicole Panko and Range Officer Brad Ellsworth. Competitors wish to offer them, and the Massasoit Gun Club, thanks for a fine competitive experience.

The last NRA Sectional in Rhode Island, the four position conventional match, will be held on March 4, 2012 at Smithfield. A match program may be found on pronematch.com. There are still a few openings available and one should enter as quickly as possible to avoid being shut out.

You can download the match results here: 2012-ri-open-sctional (PDF, 82KB)

From left, Zachary Connell, Mackenzie Martin, and Brian Jylkka. Photo by Nicole Panko.

About Digby Hand

The six foot two inch tall Digby Hand was a well known rifleman of his time, made famous in the book The Old China Hands, by Charles Finney. As a corporal in E Company of the United States 15th Infantry Regiment in China stationed in the late 1920s Hand was renowned for his skill with the Springfield rifle. Hand, a native of Arkansas, joined the 15th because his grandfather, who rode with Nathan Bedford Forrest’s cavalry, fought against the 15th at Battle of Shiloh and said that ‘There haint but one Yankee outfit in this whole world I’d let my grandson jine with, and that’s teh15th Infantry.’ His name and spirit of excellence in marksmanship is kept alive by the Corporal Digby Hand Schützenverein.
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