COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (April 11, 2019)
Matthew Sanchez picked up his second medal this week at the National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships (NJOSC), but this time he was atop the podium today, winning gold in Men’s Air Rifle at the Olympic Shooting Center in Colorado Springs.
The high school junior from Tampa, Florida entered the Final with the highest two-day Qualification score of 1245.8 Though he finished in seventh place in today’s Final (Additional points - four for first, 3.5 for second, three for third and so on - were awarded based on finish in the Final), Sanchez was able to keep the gold from Finals winner and eventual silver medalist Jared Eddy (Midland, Georgia), who shot an impressive Finals score of 247.2. The West Virginia freshman’s Finals win also featured three, 10.9 shots – two of them occurring in a row. A 10.9 is a perfect shot in international rifle or pistol. As this was a selection match for the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Junior World Cup in Germany this summer, all athletes shot two Qualification matches and were selected for the Final based on cumulative points. Medals were awarded on the total points from Qualification and Finals finish.
“I had a little trouble with air right before the match, but I managed to sort things out,” Sanchez said. “Once the first day hit, I had my stuff together and was able to put up a really good score.” Sanchez, 16, departs for Beijing, China in one week where he will compete in the ISSF World Cup.
“This was like my third or fourth time out here and I remember coming in first as a J3,” Sanchez said. “I was looking at all these people and seeing how good the competition was,