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MCJROTC Rifle Team wins first AIA competition of year

KHS JROTC Rifle TeamThe Kofa High School Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (MCJROTC) Rifle Team took home first place in the Carver Mountain Rifle Tournament on Oct. 22-23, 2021 at Cesar Chavez High School in Laveen, Arizona.

It was the first Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) competition of the 2021-22 school year for the team, which regularly contends on a national level.

“It’s a great start to the rifle season,” KHS MCJROTC Instructor Maj Todd Birney said. “We are very proud of their hard work and dedication leading to success. The cadets have been able to be competitive due to putting in their time at practice, learning from their mistakes and making the correct adjustments.”

Two separate Kofa teams placed in the top 4 out of 15 schools. A Kofa team made up of cadets Vicente Kraft, Corina Castillo, Hannah Daniels, and Dylan De Guzman won first place. Kofa’s second team of Lucia Arellano, Alayna Pallanes, Domenique Parker, and Jesus Feliz earned a fourth-place finish.

Kraft finished second place in the overall shooter category and first place overall in Kneeling position. Castillo received second place overall in Prone position and Pallanes received first place overall in Standing position.

The Rifle Team is part of the only MCJROTC program in Yuma County. It is part of the Career & Technical Education program at Kofa High School and currently has more than 130 students enrolled. Under the leadership of Sgt Maj Collen Laarman and Maj Birney, the program has risen to national prominence and has been recognized as a prestigious Naval Honors School the past two years.

Eric Patten