Aleena Arias, Yaisa Walker, Johnathon Tatum, Preston Burton and Gabe Elder.

Cardinal shooters take 7th nationally in all-service competition

They previously claimed the Army championship

After winning the Army national championship, leading members of the Webb City JROTC rifle team spent their spring break competing against the best shooters from all service JROTC programs.

Preston Burton, Gabe Elder, Johnathon Tatum, Yaisa Walker and Aleena Arias traveled with their instructor, Lt. Col. (retired) Dustin Elder back to Camp Perry Ohio to compete in the JROTC All Service National Rifle Championship. 

The top seven teams from the Army, Marine, Navy and Air Force JROTC programs.

Elder reports that “when the dust setteled, we were able to hold down seventh place out of those 28 teams.

“That is a great finish considering that this is the first year that we even qualified to shoot at this event. To put it in perspective, there are over 1,700 Army JROTC programs in the U.S. and over 1,100 of them have rifle programs. That is just the Army side alone, not counting the Marine, Navy and Air Force JROTC programs. 

“The statistic that Major General Munera gave in his speech was that the 220 cadets who were shooting over the weekend represented the top 3% of high school shooters in the country. To finish in the top 10 puts our kids in the top one half of one percent of shooters in the country.

“By any standard, these kids have had a great season and I am immensely proud of their dedication and mental toughness to make it as far as they did.”

The shooting competition area at Camp Perry Ohio. (Lt. Col. (ret) Dustin Elder photos)