Engineers Rifle Team Captures Beanpot Competition

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Returning to action for the first time in 2014, the MIT rifle team came up with a number of career highs during the annual Beanpot competition this weekend, enough to carry the Engineers to the team title. MIT posted the top scores in both the small bore and air rifle disciplines on Saturday, putting up scores of 2,164 and 2,245 to edge out second-place Coast Guard. On Sunday MIT had the top air rifle score as well with a 2,246. Coast Guard posted the top smallbore score on the final day, a 2,167. Teams from Canisius, Penn State, Wentworth Institute of Technology and Penn State ROTC also took part in the competition.

Posting rounds of 97 and 96 in the kneeling position of the smallbore competition on Saturday, senior Kaiying Liao (Issaquah, Wash.) went on to post a career-high 567 to lead MIT and all other shooters in the match. Liao just edged out Alexis Chavarria-Aguila from Coast Guard by six points for the individual title. Sophomore Sarah Wright (Christchurch, New Zealand) was third overall with a 555, including a round of 99 in the prone position. Freshman Kelly Mathesius (Aurora, Ill.) turned in a season-best of 524 and sophomore Abra Shen (Toronto, Ontario) fired a 519 for the Engineers, who edged Coast Guard by 20 points for the top smallbore score.

On Sunday it was Wright who claimed top honors, posting a pair of 98s in the prone position on her way to a final total of 569. Chavarria-Aguila was the runner-up again, posting one score of 99 in the prone position to help her to a 565. Liao finished third overall for the Engineers with a 555, with Shen and Mathesius posting scores of 517 and 515 to round out the MIT scoring.

Wright also had a round of 99 in the air rifle competition on Saturday as she tallied a career best total of 572 to tie with Coast Guard's Nicholas Paisker for top individual honors. Chavarria-Aguila took third overall for the Bears with a 564. Just one point behind was MIT's Liao and freshman Jia Yi Goh (Singapore) with their 563's, while Shen turned in a career-high with her effort of 547. In the team scoring it was another close one, with the Engineers again edging out the Bears, 2,245 to 2,237.

Goh claimed the top spot on Sunday, seeing all of her rounds score at least 93 points on her way to a 574. Wright was second, duplicating her Saturday effort with another 572. Chavarria-Aguila claimed third overall for Coast Guard with a 569. Liao fired a 551, with Shen upping her career best again with a 549.

Mathesius also recorded a season best in air rifle with her total of 524 on Saturday and added another season best in air rifle on Sunday with a 534. Freshman Kevin Ng (Coral Springs, Fla.) also shot for the Engineers, posting a season best with a 480 in smallbore on Saturday. Sophomore Christopher Rogers (Levittown, N.Y.) also competed for MIT, posting a season-high of 499 in smallbore on Saturday. Senior Vanya Britto (Redding, Calif.) also set a new career-high for the Engineers, firing off a 500 in air rifle on Sunday.