Eagle ROTC Cadets Win Ranger Challenge

1-30 Eagle ROTC cadets win Ranger challneGeorgia Southern University’s Eagle Battalion won the 2013 6th Brigade Ranger Challenge last weekend in Camp Blanding, Fla. This is the first time Georgia Southern has captured the trophy in the two day challenge that tests the physical endurance and mental agility of the nine person team. Today, the cadets presented the championship trophy to University president Brooks Keel, Ph.D.

“I can’t tell you how delighted and pleased I am,” said Keel. “What an honor it is for our ROTC program to represent the 6th Brigade and to represent Georgia Southern in such an incredible way. We are so proud of these young men and women and for what they do for our University and our country.”

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The Eagle Battalion won by just one point and beat 37 teams from the southeastern United States and Puerto Rico. The Army ROTC Department fielded two teams this year with 280 cadets. The Eagle Battalion is comprised of Georgia Southern students, and the Coastal Battalion is made up of students from Armstrong Atlantic State University, Savannah State University and the Savannah College of Art and Design. The Coastal Battalion finished sixth in the competition.

“We are ecstatic and so proud of our cadets,” said LTC Gary Morea, Eagle Battalion commander. “Throughout the competition, the cadets not only had to demonstrate their physical fitness but overcome mental challenges, too, and use critical thinking to accomplish the mission.” Morea said the two teams began training extensively five months ago with workouts that started at 5 a.m. and included five to 10 mile ruck marches, long runs, upper-body development and swimming endurance training.

The Ranger Challenge included marksmanship and land navigation on day one of the competition and a 13 mile course that tested their technical and tactical skills. The Eagle Battalion placed in the top five in every event and had the fastest overall time in the competition by completing the course in three hours and 11 minutes.

The Eagle Battalion cadets will continue training for the International Sandhurst Competition to be held at the United States Military Academy at West Point in April.

Georgia Southern University, a Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 120 degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement.  Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered approach to education. Visit: www.georgiasouthern.edu.

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