MILLEDGEVILLE — Riflery requires trigger, breathing and mental control. Georgia Military College Prep senior Marissa Langston handles all well, as she leads her undefeated JROTC rifle team this season.
The group is 4-0 in head-to-head GHSA Area 4 competition pending Thursday’s result against Lakeside High School.
Langston’s 286 out of 300 in a team win over Hephzibah High School garnered her Athlete of the Week honors. Teammates Jenna Bethea, Cameron Lowe, Analese Bridges and Kris Irvin contributed to a team 1121 total crushing Hephzibah’s 1026.
Chief instructor Mary Ellen Eaton and JROTC coach Sgt. Maj. McCabe speak highly of the four-year participant. Langston is fourth place out of 91 Area 4 West division shooters with 97.75 prone, 90.75 standing and 95 kneeling averages.
Bethea is right on her heels.
McCabe has coached Langston for the last year. The senior serves as the team captain.
“(Langston) leads by example and motivates the team. She encourages them. I think she is a good captain that communicates effectively with the team. They listen to her because she is right there with them,” McCabe said.
Langston said her older sister’s rifle team past pushed her towards the sport. She is doing well carrying on the family tradition.
Most competitions last at minimum an hour and a half. Shooters use air rifles firing pellets.
The GMC shooter said riflery takes a toll like any sport. Langston is used to explaining the particulars to classmates.
“It’s just as challenging as any other sport mentally, emotionally and physically,” Langston said. “You have to compete with yourself and the other team. You don’t know how they are doing until the end.”
The Athlete of the Week considers standing the most difficult shooting position. A personal best of 289 gives her something to reach for the next few weeks.
Langston takes the sport more seriously than her freshman year in practice and during pressure time.
The GMC senior has several college options. She might shoot collegiately at North Georgia College.
Her parents wouldn’t mind.
“They want me to go get some college scholarships. I’m looking at North Georgia’s team. I’ve already talked to their coach,” Langston said.
As a whole, the team does a good job of breathing control and following through the shot. Being disciplined enough to hold position contributes to the success each competition.
GMC Prep has two more regular season matches before sectionals, where the Bulldogs likely face East division leader Elbert County. A win or any individuals who score 290 or better make state.
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