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ANTALYA, Turkey - Shooting on the beautiful Konyaalti Beach, the second stage of the World Cup compound final matches began. Team USA battled against fierce competitors in difficult winds for close, exciting matches.
Both compound teams from the US entered the finals with high expectations of gold. Cheering for her teammates, Diane Watson (Hudson, Fla.) tweeted support, 'Team USA is ready!" The women, Erika Jones (Grand Island, Neb.), Jamie Van Natta (Toledo, Ohio), and Carli Cochran (Willow Street, Pa.) shot well against their opponents from Colombia, but history was made when the team led by Sara Lopez claimed victory.
The men's team, consisting of compound legends, Reo Wilde (Pocatello, Idaho), Braden Gellenthien (College Station, Texas), and Rodger Willet, Jr. (Gloucester, Pa.), faced their toughest competition on the field, No. 2 team Denmark. Although in all recent encounters USA had defeated Denmark, today the team from America took silver. Team USA took an early lead in the first set and it looked to be an easy path to the podium, but after two lower scoring sets and a perfect 60 from Denmark, the US trailed and ended the match 225-230.
After Italy claimed the gold over India in a very close mixed team final, Germany's Kristina Berger clinched the win for bronze over Korea's So Jung Youn, who had hoped to retain the leads her country's compound team had been taking in the World Cup thus far. With a shocking number of arrows in the 8-ring, Korea's Ji Hyun Seok, last month's individual gold medalist, conceded the title to Sara Lopez of Cololmbia for her second gold medal of the morning.
Disaster struck for USA's Braden Gellenthien as he entered the bronze medal match. His string broke, but his opponent from Denmark, Martin Damsbo generously offered to lend Gellenthien his backup bow. USA's Jake Kaminski (Gainesville, Fla.) stood in as his coach and lent a watchful eye for some quick practice before the match. Despite being at a terrible disadvantage, Gellenthien fought to win, but trailed farther behind Damsbo after each set. After showing incredible sportsmanship, Denmark took its second victory over the US today.
Denmark also took the individual gold title with Damsbo's teammate Patrick Laursen shooting many 10s against Austria's Georg Dollinger.
Competition resumes tomorrow with the recurve final matches.
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Some information attributed to World Archery Communication.
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