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February 13, 2011

Gold for U.S. Archers at Indoor Challenge

The top sixteen archers who competed recently in the European Indoor Tournament of Nimes, France, and in this weekend's World Archery Festival in Las Vegas, met last night in the Archery World Cup Indoor Challenge, an exciting set system elimination round. Featuring many of the world's best archers, the Indoor Challenge capped off an exciting day of shooting at the World Archery Festival, otherwise known as "The Vegas Shoot."

After the second of three days of shooting at the World Archery Festival, Erika Anschutz leads the pack in the women's compound category, finishing with a 599/52x. Christie Colin and Jamie Van Natta rounded out the top three, with their scores of 598/46x and 598/43x, respectively.  The competition in this group is expected to be close heading into the final round on Sunday, with just 30 arrows remaining.

Competition in the compound men's category was also extremely hot on Saturday, with Nicholas Annen still leading the group, shooting a 600/59x. Reigning World Champion Reo Wilde follows close behind with his score of 600/58x; George Ryals ended the day in third place, shooting a 600/56x. Exciting competition is expected on Sunday afternoon, with the top 24 men still "clean" after two days.

In the recurve women's group, Naomi Folkard (GBR) led the category with her score of 578/13x; Olympian Jennifer Nichols shot a strong 287 on the second day to remain in second with a 573/38x. Carina Christiansen (DEN) took the third position, shooting a 571/20x. Possible surprises for Sunday include Khatuna Lorig, currently holding fourth place but within striking distance of third.

For the men, there was some movement in the top ranks, as Crispin Duenas (CAN) moved into the top position, shooting a 593/28x to take first. USA Archery Resident Athlete Jake Kaminski follows close behind, hitting a 589/31x to finish second. Michele Frangilli (ITA), consistent over two days with matching 294s for a 588/36x, ended in third. Competition is close in the rest of the group, with Magnus Petersson (SWE) tied with Frangilli for score but with fewer Xs.

The Archery World Cup Indoor Challenge took place on Saturday night in the Main Ballroom of the Riviera, in front of a standing-room-only crowd. Several hundred spectators were treated to the excitement of an international competition, as the top sixteen archers who competed in both Nimes and Las Vegas faced off in head-to-head set system elimination matches.  

Following several rounds of competition and many tied matches that were resolved with shoot-offs, the field was narrowed to medal match contenders in each category. For the women's recurve, Kristin Braun and Karine Ranson (FRA) were both defeated in the semifinal matches, ending with the bronze medal. Louise Laursen (DEN) and Naomi Folkard (GBR) faced off for the gold medal in a close match, with Laursen finally took with a 6-4 victory over Folkard.

For the recurve men, it was Duenas (CAN) and Thomas Aubert (FRA) who ended with the bronze medal, while Kaminski and Frangilli (ITA) went on to shoot for gold. After a give and take match that brought spectators to their feet, Frangilli finally took the last set by one point, winning the gold, 7-3.

The compound matches were extremely close, on both the women's and men's sides. Van Natta and Yumiko Honda (JPN) both took the bronze medal, while Gladys Willems (BEL) and number one world ranked Albina Loginova ( RUS) faced off for the gold medal, in a match that lasted four sets with the victory finally going to Loginova, 6-2.

For the compound men's matches, Jesse Broadwater and Martin Damsbo (DEN) were both defeated in their semifinal matches, taking the bronze, while Reo Wilde and Braden Gellenthien went on to compete for the gold. Wilde, shooting five perfect 30s over five sets, defeated Gellenthien by two set points and a single arrow, to take the gold in an exciting finish to the event.

Complete results from the Indoor Challenge may be found at; results from today's exciting conclusion to the World Archery Festival's "Vegas Shoot" can be found here:

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