On Target

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Charlie and Delta Companies, 3rd Battalion, 398th Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) top female shooter of the competition, Sgt. Christina Crittenden, spots for Airman Kidd during rifle competition. Photo by the Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association

ARLINGTON, Tenn. — Marksmanship is a basic Soldier skill; important to every Soldier, and tested annually by regulation. Finding new and rewarding ways to hone marksmanship skills is an important step in maintaining proficiency and developing expertise.

On September 19th, elements of Charlie and Delta Companies, 3rd Battalion 398th Regiment (BCT), 3rd Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET), competed in the 22nd Annual Service Rifle competition hosted by Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association. The competition was held at the Memphis Sport Shooting Association, in Arlington, Tennessee- part of the greater Memphis area.   

The competition featured teams of four shooters each, ranked by aggregate score of all shooters from all positions, along with an individual shooter competition. All shooters started with a five-round familiarization fire.

Then competitors fired four different iterations consisting of: a twenty-round slow fire at a distance of three hundred meters, followed by a ten-round within sixty seconds at three hundred meters, then a ten-round within sixty seconds at a distance of two hundred meters from the sitting or kneeling position, and finishing up with a ten-round iteration within sixty seconds from the standing position at a distance of two hundred meters.

Charlie and Delta Companies from 3rd Battalion 398th Regiment represented the Army Reserve well against multiple teams of the Tennessee National Guard, Tennessee Air National Guard and Civilian Marksmen, taking second and fifth place for the team competition. They also fielded the high scorer for the two hundred meter standing firing iteration by Staff Sgt. Abel King, and the top female shooter of the competition, Sgt. Christina Crittenden. 

Competitions, such as this, provide Soldiers the chance to refine their marksmanship skills and test their abilities under conditions outside the normal course of basic rifle marksmanship. Competition with other components, services and civilians are great opportunities to demonstrate marksmanship proficiency in a friendly but competitive atmosphere. 

While the Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association hold this specific competition annually, there are many opportunities to compete in service rifle or service pistol competitions, through regional organizations such as the MSGRA, or at the national level in a sanctioned Civilian Marksmanship Program event. 

Charlie and Delta Companies, 3rd Battalion, 398th Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) team (left to right) Staff Sgt. Kevin Vincent, Staff Sgt. Jonathan Pope, Staff Sgt. Abel King and Staff Sgt. Joshua Law. Photo by the Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association

The CMP is a national organization dedicated to training and educating U.S. citizens in responsible use of firearms and air guns through gun safety training, marksmanship training and competitions. 

The CMP also manages the Distinguished Badge program for U.S. Civilians who shoot in competition; each branch of military service manages their own Distinguished Badge Program in concert with the CMP and in accordance with applicable regulations.

Distinguished Pistol and Distinguished Rifle Badges are the highest marksmanship award authorized by the U.S. Government for both military and civilian shooters. Distinguished Badges are earned through the accumulation of Excellence-In-Competition “Leg” points awarded at certain competitions, and are authorized for wear on military uniforms for military shooters.

While not an EIC point competition, the 22nd Annual Service Rifle Competition held by the MSGRA, has a typical format of competition shooting; multiple iterations at varying distances with a time limit on putting shots on target.

For more information on the Civilian Marksmanship Program, or to browse upcoming competitions, please visit the CMP’s website at https://thecmp.org/.  The Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association can be found on Facebook at For more information on the Civilian Marksmanship Program, or to browse upcoming competitions, please visit the CMP’s website at https://thecmp.org/.  The Mid-South Guard and Reserve Association can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Mid-South-Guard-Reserve-Association-129830560389960/.

Charlie and Delta Companies of 3rd Battalion 398th Regiment set a fine example for the rest of the 3rd Brigade 95th Training Division (IET) by pursuing marksmanship expertise outside the confines of traditional Basic Rifle Marksmanship and showing that competition provides a great opportunity for good training and a good time at the range. 

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