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June 12, 2013

Team USA Strong in World Cup Qualifications Despite Near Sweep by Korea

ANTALYA, Turkey - Competition began Tuesday at the second stage of the Archery World Cup, where recurve archers shot a 144 arrow qualification round - 36 arrows at each of four distances. For the compound archers, it was a 72 arrow round at 50 meters, and both divisions faced tricky winds and hot weather on the field.  

The American compound men were standouts, led by Rodger Willett, Jr. (Gloucester, Va.), Willett qualified first by a considerable 5 points for a 706, over teammate Reo Wilde (Pocatello, Idaho), who reeled in the second highest score of the day with a 701. Close behind him were Braden Gellenthien (College Station, Texas), placing 10th with a 697, and Dave Cousins (Standish, Maine), 29th with a 689. Together, the team qualified number one.

Other standouts in the men's compound category included Martin Damsbo (DEN), Rajat Chauhan (IND) and Min Lihong (KOR), all of whom could present a threat in Thursday's elimination rounds, along with Peter Elzinga (NED).

The Korean compound women's team had a repeat stellar performance in the compound qualifications, claiming the 1st, 5th, and 6th seeds and the top team ranking. Seemingly invincible in the women's recurve division, Korea is rapidly gaining ground in the women's and men's compound ranks.

Youn So Jung took the top spot, only one point higher than USA's Erika Jones (Grand Island, Neb.), who finished second with a score of 689.  American teammates, Jamie Van Natta (Toledo, Ohio) Carli Cochran (Willow Street, Pa.) Diane Watson (Hudson, Fla.) scored 685, 677, and 664 for 7th, 22nd, and 43rd respectively. Thanks to the strong finishes, the US compound women qualified second and will face No. 15 Australia in the 1/8 round on Friday. 

Korea took a complete sweep of the recurve qualifications with the top three finishers on both the men and women's fields. However, posing a significant threat is Team USA's Brady Ellison (Chula Vista, Calif.), who saw improvement from his performance at the Shanghai World Cup last month. Following a difficult start at 90 meters, Ellison came back to finish 5th as the top qualifier for the US men.

USA's Joe Fanchin (Chula Vista, Calif.), Jake Kaminski (Gainesville, Fla.), and Richard "Butch" Johnson (Woodstock, Conn.) scored 1328, 1319, and 1292 to qualify 18th, 23rd, and 51st respectively, clinching the number three team ranking.

Khatuna Lorig (West Hollywood, Calif.) again led the US women in the qualifying round, scoring 1344 to place 10th. Miranda Leek (College Station, Texas) and Mackenzie Brown (Chula Vista, Calif.) shot similar scores all day to finish with 1319 and 1317 respectively, placing 32nd and 35th. Heather Koehl (Sheboygan Falls, Wa.) was not far behind with a 1292 for the No. 43 spot. The top three US finishers ranked 5th headed into team eliminations, and will begin with a matchup versus Australia on Friday.

In other World Cup news, disaster struck for two archers as day one drew to a close.  India's Dola Banerjee and Kaori Kawanaka of Japan neglected to fill out totals on their scorecards for 30 meters. Despite an appeal, the Chairman of Judges was forced to award scores of 0 for both archers.

Competition resumes on Thursday morning with 1/48 and 1/24 compound eliminations, followed by mixed team eliminations and all remaining individual eliminations through the semifinals.

Detailed results, including statistics for each archer competing, may be found at; for official results, visit Follow USA Archery on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for photos and updates from the field throughout the week.

Some information attributed to World Archery Communication. 

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