Rifle falls to TCU in spring opener


Annabella Mireles

UTEP placed behind TCU with a score of 4541 and TCU with 4742.

Emmanuel Rivas Valenzuela, Sports Editor

The University of Texas at El Paso women’s rifle hosted No. 1 Texas Christian University (TCU) early Saturday morning Jan. 28 at the University of Texas at El Paso Rifle Range located in the Military Science Building. 

To end the fall stretch, UTEP exceeded a 4600 aggregate after the team’s trip to Nebraska in late November 2022 by noting an impressive 4613 aggregate.

Prior to the Nebraska matchup, the team also surpassed 4600 against TCU in early November with a 4604 aggregate. 

The TCU Horned Frogs leads the nation in air rifle averages while ranking second in smallbore and aggregate average. Against Nebraska, the Horned Frogs scored 4744 to beat the Cornhuskers.  

UTEP as a team has an aggregate average of 4,758.00. The Miners are led by Jonna Warnken with an aggregate average of 1,155.13. Senior Jonna Warnken currently leads the Miners with an 1163 aggregate while fifth year senior Morgahn Warner is at a close second at 1161. 

Results for Saturday morning’s match placed UTEP behind TCU. UTEP scored  4541 behind the No. 1 team in TCU (4742).  

Freshman Julie Johannessen shot a perfect 600 in air rifle allowing her to become the fifth riffler to in TCU history to complete such a score on air rifle.  

Warnken continued to lead the Miners in this match with an aggregate of 1158. Senior Isabel Brooks finished with an 1138 aggregate. Junior Isabella Rios posted a 1136 and senior Amoret McCartney finished with 1109. 

Only two UTEP shooters managed to finish in the top 10 in the aggregate categories. Rios and Warnken placed in the top 10 for the smallbore standings and Warnken and Brooks placed within the top ten in air rifle. 

The Miners will head north for the Patriot Rifle Conference on Saturday, Feb. 4 and Sunday, Feb. 5 in Fairbanks, Alaska. The smallbore section of the championship will be held on Saturday in the E.F. Horton Rifle Range and the air rifle section will occur on Sunday in the Alaska Airlines Gymnasium.

There, the UTEP Miners will face off against the Air Force Academy Falcons, the University of Alaska Fairbanks Nanooks, the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers, the Ohio State University Buckeyes and the TCU Horned Frogs. 

Following the championship, the Miners will head back home for the NCAA Qualifier against the University of Alaska Fairbanks Nanooks Saturday, Feb. 18 at the University of Texas at El Paso Rifle Range located in the Military Science Building in El Paso, Texas. 

All stats courtesy of UTEP Athletics.

Emmanuel Rivas Valenzuela is the sports editor and may be reached at [email protected]: @rivasemmanuel2 on Instagram.