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Yankton, South Dakota - The excitement on the field was palpable at the Hoyt World Open finals last night. Spectators including the most experienced of archers and locals from the community were on the edges of their seats, cheering their friends and wishing for their success as archers shot for their share of over $54000 in potential cash prizes from Hoyt as the title sponsor, and USA Archery.
The biggest story of the evening was Jesse Broadwater of Jennerstown, PA, the archer who accumulated two USA Archery National Championship titles this week and a new World Record, as well as the coveted Easton Award. Broadwater again shot his way into the finals, this time against Canada's Dietmar Trillus, one the world's top ranked compound archers. Both archers opened with 30s to start the contest, and then Broadwater took a one point lead in the second end, and never looked back. With his final three arrows, Broadwater clinched yet another gold medal win for the week, and a check for $10000, while Trillus took the silver.
As the compound men's gold medal match was the last of the evening, Broadwater then proceeded to participate in the New Car Shoot-Off, an event open to archers who participated in both the NFAA Outdoor National Championships and the USA Archery National Target Championships. Under quickly darkening skies, archers shot at a non-standard small target face, in a "sudden death" round that eliminated archers as soon as they missed the gold. The field was quickly narrowed from over a hundred archers, and in just four rounds, Jesse Broadwater took his third new car win from the NFAA.
"I'm just amazed," said Broadwater after climbing out of the seat of the new Ford Mustang that was driven out to the field so that archers could see the prize they were shooting for. "A lot of emotion and excitement came out in the end today, and I'm just really amazed."
There were several other matches shot during the finals of the Hoyt World Open. The evening opened with the women's recurve bronze medal match, in which two time Olympian Naomi Folkard (GBR) was strong enough to defeat USAT member Shannon Ostling (WA) with a 6-2 win. Though Ostling, cheered by the largely American crowd, shot well enough to take one set, she was unable to stop her opponent.
In the women's gold medal match, Team USA's Heather Koehl (WI) met Ya-Ting Tan (TPE), the top seeded female archer overall. Tan, having shot a 1350 in the junior category for the ranking round, was a tough competitor in the finals. Koehl opened with a two point lead after the first set, but Tan took the second, third and fourt sets to win the $10000 prize and the gold medal. Koehl received $2500 for her silver medal win.
The men then took to the field, with five-time Olympian Butch Johnson (CT), coming off a fourth place ranking and a new Masters World Record, facing Texas A&M favorite Max Sera (TX) for the bronze medal. Johnson came out swinging, taking the first two sets for a 4-2 lead. Though Sera took the third set, Johnson prevailed in the end, winning the bronze medal with a 6-2 victory.
The next match was a true showdown between friends and teammates Brady Ellison (AZ) and Jake Kaminski (NY), shooting for the men's recurve gold medal and the $10000 cash prize. It was a tough battle between these two powerhouse shooters, with a give and take in the first two sets to tie the score up. Ellison gained a 4-2 lead in the third set, and clinched the gold medal win with a 6-2 victory, giving Kaminksi the silver medal.
On the compound side, it was no less exciting, with Andrea Gales (GBR) and Samantha Neal (NY) shooting a straight 50 meter match of 15 arrows for a total possible cumulative score of 150. Neal opened with wins in the first two ends, and then Gales took the third, and then increased her lead to three points going into the final end. Remaining strong, Neal took the bronze medal for the United States and the cash prize as well.
In the women's compound gold medal match, it was multi-time World Record holder Jamie Van Natta (OH) shooting for gold against Christie Colin (PA), fellow World Cup and World Championships medalist. Colin opened with a strong four point lead in the first end, and held the lead for three ends. Though Van Natta narrowed Colin's lead a one point gap and then a tie, it was not enough to stop Colin, who took the one arrow tiebreaker shootoff with a solid ten to win gold and the $10000 prize, while Van Natta took the silver and her own $2500 prize.
For the men's bronze match, it was a meeting between Hoyt's own Kevin Wilkey (UT) and Rod Menzer (WI), both very accomplished archers in their own right, and Wilkey coming off top scores during the USAA and NFAA field events. Though it was a 29-all tie in the first end, Wilkey established a commanding ten point lead after the second end, and Menzer was unable to recover. Strong shooting from Wilkey increased the lead to 13 points heading into the final end, to give him the bronze medal and the cash prize.
Earlier in the day, Master and Cadet archers also participated in the Hoyt World Open in both recurve and compound categories, and there was great excitement among the many parents, coaches and spectators present. Complete results from all categories in the Hoyt World Open are available by clicking here. Photos from the event will be available on USA Archery's Facebook page late Sunday.
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