West Virginia University freshman and West Springfield High School alum Ginny Thrasher won both smallbore and air rifle, only the second WVU athlete to win both individual honors, at the recent national championships in Akron, Ohio. Thrasher's shooting led the Mountaineers to an unprecedented 18th national rifle championship and their fourth in a row. The Exponent Telegram likened her performance to winning the Heisman Trophy as a freshman, or winning the NCAA 100- and 200-meter dashes as a freshman. The paper noted if she was a basketball star and not a rifle athlete she would be looking over a multi-million dollar offer from the NBA.
Thrasher is a self-described "army brat" who was born in New York but lived around the world. She spent her high school years at West Springfield High School in Springfield, VA where she the rifle team's captain for three years and a four-time MVP. She placed third at the 2014 Junior Olympics Championships in the women’s 50m smallbore, and finished sixth in the women’s 50m smallbore at the 2015 Spring World Cup Selection. Thrasher also earned five medals, two in open categories and three in junior competitions, at the 2015 USA Shooting National Championships for Rifle/Pistol, securing U.S. National Team status and her haul at the 2015 USA Shooting National Championships included a Gold medal in the junior’s 50m 3 positions rifle (1171), a second-place finish (836.8) in the open women’s 10m air rifle and a third-place finish (1238.7) in the open women’s 50m rifle prone with the prone score securing her the junior championship title.
Besides shooting for her high school team, Ginny also was a member of the very successful Acorns Optimist Rifle Club in Northern, Virginia. Talking to the Exponent Telegram about her first NCAA Championship experience she said:
“The seniors have been very good through this whole year, making sure I could trust them and they could trust me. I feel like over this week we bonded a lot,” she said. “They told me everything I did so far was enough. I didn’t need to win. I just needed to shoot the way I can shot.”
Thrasher was interviewed by NRANews.com's Cam Edwards about her performance and told him she did not take up shooting until her grandfather took her hunting in the eight grade.