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YANKTON, South Dakota - This week, the World Archery Indoor Championships return to the U.S. at the NFAA Easton Yankton Archery Complex. While the entry list may be a bit short compared to previous editions, top players are here and focused on gold.
For Olympian Mackenzie Brown, this is her first World Indoor Championship and she will shoot with seasoned compound archer Crystal Gauvin in her recurve Team USA debut, and Tatyana Muntyan, who has also competed in the Olympics for the Soviet Union. Brown commented on the facility: "I think we're in the new addition on to their building, it looks really nice and the lighting is immaculate - almost too good. We're out here practicing, a lot of us are pretty tired from Vegas and traveling but we're pushing ourselves to get in the best practice possible and make the most of today."
Speaking on behalf of the recurve junior men's team, Adam Heidt, who was a member of the world champion youth team from Rosario last year, commented that the team, including Seth McWherter and Trenton Cowles, is feeling strong: "I think we're looking really good. We threw down a couple 60s in team practice so we're pretty confident. It's a really cool atmosphere with everyone being here and I think we might have a little bit of a home field advantage with a supportive crowd behind us."
Tate Morgan joins an impressive compound senior men's squad with last week's Indoor World Cup Final gold and silver medalists Jesse Broadwater and Kris Schaff. While Morgan has competed internationally and has been a long standing strong shooter on the national circuit, this weekend marks his Team USA debut. "It's definitely cool; this is something that I've worked for," commented Morgan. "I've been right there a lot of times in the rankings, and eventually it's like 'when are you going to make it?' and then you finally do make it, it's a great feeling."
On the team portion of the competition where the U.S. compound teams are historical heavy hitters, Morgan added: "Kris and Jesse are probably two of the best guys you could be on a team with, so while you still have to do your part, it makes it a lot easier knowing they're backing you up." Those words sound a lot like Schaff's just before his outdoor World Archery Championship appearance with Braden Gellenthien and Steve Anderson last summer where they won gold.
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