Soldiers of the 416th TEC attended the 2015 US Army Small Arms Championships (All Army) February 1-7 at Fort Benning and won a number of awards. The Championships are an advanced combat live-fire training event with skill exercises applicable to all military small arms firing disciplines. Capt. Samuel Freeman, Staff Sgt. Zachary Raskie, Sgt. Ben Mercer, and Sgt. Mathis Halley represented the TEC and was the first place team in the rifle events and second place overall.
“All Army is a unique competition that requires discipline in different styles of shooting, weapons, and physical conditioning,” said Sgt. Mercer. “Everyone using rack grade weapons really improves the training side of things and puts a lot of competitors on an equal playing field that might otherwise not afford the match grade weapons required to compete in the civilian equivalent of these matches. Many soldiers who start here have never shot over 300 meters. Learning how to read wind, manipulate their sights and seeing exactly where they are hitting after adjustments makes a huge difference in the overall understanding of marksmanship fundamentals.”
The Championships are broken down into rifle, pistol, and an action-based combined arms events. “I thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere and challenge of competing against Soldiers with such a broad range of marksmanship experience, both in garrison and in theatre.” said SSG Raskie. “I can’t wait until next years All Army!”
As a team, the 416th TEC took first place Rifle Team and second place in the Infantry team match and the overall aggregate. Individually, the 416th TEC shooters were first, second, and third place in the Audie Murphy Match. Cpt. Freeman won first place rifle, third place pistol, and second place in the individual aggregate. Sgt. Mercer was third, place rifle in the Open class and Sgt. Halley was third place rifle in the Novice class.
“The All Army Shooting Competition was an outstanding training and learning experience,” said Sgt. Halley. “I was able to implement proper shooting techniques given by experienced shooters. By getting quality training and having some of the best shooters in the Army give instruction soldiers are also increasing their confidence and knowledge of what to do in various shooting conditions. Shooting in these competitions not only encourages you to shoot your best but actually put time into learning your weapon, practice correct firing steps, and pushes you to better yourself, for both yourself and your team.”