The Madison County rifle team (8-0) outgunned Gainesville 1,131-1,013 to earn a berth in the state semifinals.
Wade Threlkeld shot a 289 to lead the top-seeded Raiders over the sixth-seeded Gainesville team. Casey Brown added a 286, followed by J.S. Fielding (281) and Nathan Coker (275).
Madison County was scheduled to shoot Wednesday (March 18) in the semifinals against Lumpkin County, but results weren’t available at press time.
The winner of that match will move on to the next round on April 4.
Madison County earned a no. 1 seed out of the area for the sectionals based on the strength of another unbeaten regular season.
Due to several schools in Area 4 being unable or unwilling to travel to the area tournament due to economic reasons, officials were forced to forgo the tournament and select its seeds based on a team’s average score during the year.
But in an effort to ensure that all shooters had as many matches as possible to individually qualify for state — by shooting a 290 — area officials arranged for an impromptu postseason match for all schools who could afford to travel.
Madison County took on Evans in a match essentially for individual purposes.
The rifle Raiders competed in this match without team members who had already qualified individually for state — Wade Threlkeld and Casey Brown. However, no other Raiders qualified. Team score was still tallied and Madison County won the match 1091-1081. Nathan Coker shot 279, followed by J.S. Fielding (275), Jacob Holliman (274), Ryan Bridges (263). Garrett Cook (259) competed, but his score didn’t count.