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BANGKOK, Thailand - Team USA arrived in Bangkok last week, determined not to let a dramatic time difference impact their shooting performances. Some of America's best archery talent left a strong impression on fans, as the squad picked up five medals at the second stage of the Indoor Archery World Cup.
Erika Jones (Grand Island, Nebraska), competing in her first event of the 2014-2015 Indoor World Cup circuit, started out strong and never looked back. She clinched the top qualifying spot in the compound women's category with a solid 587 points out of a possible 600, ahead of Slovenia's Toja Cerne and Russia's Natalya Adveeva.
In yesterday's eliminations, Jones faced two of her U.S. teammates: Crystal Gauvin (Dayville, Connecticut) and Lexi Keller (Omro, Wisconsin) in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively. Jones advanced to meet Adveeva, who she edged out by one point for the gold medal, 146-145. Keller missed out on bronze by just one point, to Maneesombaikul Kanyavee of Thailand.
Gellenthien started with a fifth place qualification on Saturday, delivering a 593 in a field that saw Netherlands' Mike Schloesser deliver a near-perfect 598. On Sunday, Gellenthien faced Schloesser, stopping him with a 148-147 win in the semifinals. With a perfect 150, Gellenthien shot his way to the gold medal past silver medalist Peter Elzinga of the Netherlands. This was Gellenthien's second consecutive gold medal win.
Three other American archers also scored medals in Thailand.
Bridger Deaton (Pella, Iowa) shot well enough to reach the semifinals against Schloesser, where each posted a 145, but Deaton was just a bit more precise in a one-arrow shoot-off to break the tie. Deaton was consistent throughout the weekend, qualifying third, and looks to repeat his medal-winning performance of the outdoor season, during which he won the prestigious World Cup Final.
Olympic medalists and recurve archers Khatuna Lorig (West Hollywood, California) and Brady Ellison (Payson, Arizona) both faced challenging opponents in order to reach the podium.
Lorig was the only American in an all-Korean final. Lorig first met No. 2 seed Kim Min Jung in the quarterfinals, and with a 7-3 victory moved on to a match with Sim Ye Ji, whom she edged out, 6-4. In the gold medal final, Lorig wasn't able to stop Sungeun Jeon, who shot four straight perfect 30s to clinch the gold medal, giving Lorig the silver, while Kim won bronze.
Ellison breezed through his quarterfinal meeting with India's Anatu Das, shooting three straight 30s for a shutout win. In the semifinals, he met Im Jiwan, the number 17 seed from Korea. This match was an example of excellent shooting; Jiwan dropped only one point in five sets and Ellison only two, but Jiwan took the win, sending Ellison to the bronze medal match, which he won 7-3 against Jean-Charles Valladont of France. Gold and silver medals went to Jiwan and Donghyun Gye, both of Korea.
The next stop on the Indoor Archery World Cup circuit is Nimes, France in January. For more information on the event in Bangkok, visit: http://www.worldarchery.org/EVENTS/Indoor-World-Cup/2014-2015/Bangkok.
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