Elmore’s Rozanski — one of nation’s best

J. Patrick Eaken

    Elmore resident Sara Rozanski, 43, a 1996 Central Catholic High School graduate, says she has won a “few awards throughout the years” in competitive shooting. That is putting it modestly.

    “My greatest accomplishment and the one I’m most proud of is setting the women’s record in 2019. My next greatest accomplishment is winning the NRA Nationals High Civilian Award Trophy in 2012,” Rozanski said. “Besides that, I’ve made it into the President’s 100 a few times with the highest being fourth overall, which was also a great accomplishment.” 

    Rozanski also won the High Woman championship in the President’s 100, National Trophy Individual Match and the NRA National Matches. Plus, she won the Western Creedmoor multiple years in row, and she became rifle Distinguished in 2000.

    Her major awards and wins include the U.S.A. Distinguished Rifleman Award in September 2000 (Badge No. 1445), the Civilian Club Member’s Trophy for High Civilian Service Rifle in 2012 (score: 2362-84x), the National Trophy Individual High Woman (record-setting score: 496-22x), the Volunteer Trophy for NRA High Woman Service Rifle in 2011 (2325-56x) and 2012 (2362-84x), the President’s Hundred in 2001, 2002, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2015-19, and the President’s Hundred, High Woman in 2009 (288-7x), 2012 (390-10x), and 2016 (287-5x).

     “When I became Distinguished in September 2000. I received all but four of my Distinguished points with the M14. That is probably my only regret in my shooting career - not finishing up getting my points with the M14. Once I started competing as a junior, I never really stopped. Since beginning highpower in the mid-1990s, the only nationals I did not compete in was the summer I worked for the NRA.”

    Rozanski said to reach the next level would mean sacrificing.

    “I would like to become double or triple distinguished — that has been a goal of mine for a long time. But part of me would have not necessarily have to put the rifle down a little bit, but not be able to compete for a year or so to be able to go after service pistol (Distinguished), which would be the next one,” Rozanski said.

    “There are a lot of other international badges you have, like a .22 pistol, and they have some other badges. That is a goal I have had for a long time and that’s something I have not pursued yet.”

    She says winning competitions requires nerves and strategy just as much as it requires skill.

    “Once you get all of your fundamentals down, it all becomes more mental because I’ve shot for so long that essentially my body knows what it is doing and it knows what it needs to do. It’s just running a good mental program so that even if you have a bad shot or you are nervous, just to get that out of your head,” Rozanski said. “Each shot is its own and you know what you need to do, and just keep up the repetitions that way.”

    She says going from a shooting club to a serious competition can be hard to get used to. At her father Gerald Rozanski’s shooting range, Adams Conservation Club, the members make it feel more like a country club for social gathering. At competitions, that is not necessarily the case.

    “I shot one or two .22 matches down at Ohio State and it was a completely different atmosphere,” Rozanski said. “They kind of kept to themselves and the matches had to be quiet. A lot has changed since then, but the matches, you could not talk, you could not do anything. 

    “When I grew up doing .22s at my club you had a bunch of old men there and they were talking, screaming at each other so you could not hear, so for me to go somewhere where you had to be quiet, it was awkward.”

    In turn, Rozanski says there are different communities within each specialized area of competition.

    “The highpower community is kind of its own little community. A lot of people you will see at nationals, you’ll see them once a year. Just because you don’t talk to them throughout the year, you will see them again at nationals and it is like no time went by and you are just back to palling around and talking. 

    “With social media, it is a little bit easier to keep up to date with them throughout the year. Everyone is friendly. Like a friend lent me a $3,000 scope. If a rifle goes down and they have an extra rifle, they will lend you a rifle. You are talking $2,000. What other sport do people do that?”

    For the past three years she has served as the highpower coordinator for Camp Perry’s Civilian Marks- manship Program in Port Clinton. Prior to that, she was range master at the South CMP Competition Center in Alabama.

    “I also help CMP as a team, and we teach clinics at a couple of the different venues,” Rozanski said. 

“I help teach and I help with SAF, which is the Small Arms Firing School. It is a great way if local people want to come out and just want to try it. You get coached and then you shoot a mini-match, and you figure out if you like it. Then you can continue on and if you don’t, at least you tried it. I like doing that because I want the sport to stick around.”


















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