Saint Thomas Academy Rifle Team Narrowly Loses in Semi-Finals of National Air Rifle League Championship

News Date : 12/12/2017

Saint Thomas Academy Rifle Team Narrowly Loses in Semi-Finals of National Air Rifle League Championship 

MENDOTA HEIGHTS, Minn., Dec. 12, 2017 – Despite shooting its best score of the season, the Saint Thomas Academy rifle team was defeated 1,115 to 1,099 by the Ozark AJROTC team of Ozark, Mo., and has been eliminated from the Orion National Air Rifle League Championship Tournament (box score). The winner of the Junior Rifle Club Champions Division, Saint Thomas Academy finishes its league season with an 8-1 record. The team now looks forward to competing in the Civilian Marksmanship Program State Championship in January, the US Army Junior Open National Championship in February and the American Legion tournament. In April, the team will travel to Camp Perry, Ohio, for the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) Regional Championship.

In its match against Ozark AJROTC, Saint Thomas Academy was led by Seth Olson ’18, who shot his highest score of the season – 285 out of 300. The remaining contributing members were Riley Miller ’18, Jack Kotok ’18 and Kaleb Rutgers ’19.  The team is coached by Chief Warrant Officer 4 Paul Preblich, U.S. Army.

The post-season Championship Tournament is for the top eight teams in the National Air Rifle Sporter League. Sponsored by the Orion Scoring System, the National Air Rifle League is a national team league for high school teams and junior rifle clubs. The league has two parts: an 8-week round-robin regular season, where teams compete for their division's title, followed by the post-season, comprised of two single elimination tournaments. Only the top 16 teams across all divisions advance to the post-season to compete for the league title.

In each match, the teams compete in a Three-Position Air Rifle match. The match is modeled after Olympic rifle competitions but adapted to high school athletes. Each athlete shoots 10 shots in three different shooting positions, prone, standing and kneeling. Each shot is worth a maximum of 10 points. The sum of points scored in the 30 shots is the athlete's total. The team score is comprised of the best four athletes from each team. For more information on the league, including complete standings, visit

About Saint Thomas Academy
Founded in 1885, Saint Thomas Academy is an all-male, college preparatory, Catholic, military/leadership school committed to preparing young men to succeed in college and in life. The Academy challenges its students in grades 6-12 to excel academically, spiritually, morally and physically in and out of the classroom. It is fully accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS); a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), the Minnesota Association of Independent Schools (MAIS), and the Association of Military Colleges and Schools of the United States (AMCSUS). For more information, please visit

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Media contact: Amy Nugent, 651.450.9222 or

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