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With sunny skies and calm winds in Guadalajara, competition opened with thirty-six arrows at ninety meters for the men, and thirty-six at seventy for the women. Miranda Leek (Des Moines, IA) led the women at the first distance, hitting a new Pan Am Games record and breaking the current Star FITA record with a strong 338. For the men, it was number one world ranked archer Brady Ellison (Glendale, AZ) who came out swinging, clinching the top spot after ninety meters with 313.
During the second distance, there was some movement in the ranks at sixty meters for the women and seventy for the men; however, Leek and Ellison rallied, reclaiming their number one spots. Ellison closed out with his own Pan Am Games record, a 339, qualifying first with 652, while Juan Carlos Stevens (CUB) held second with 649, and Daniel Pineda (COL) took third with 648. Team USA's Joe Fanchin (Oceanside, CA) finished today in seventh, scoring 638, while Jake Kaminski (Elma, NY) ended in ninth with 338.
For the women, Leek posted a solid 675, followed closely by Aida Roman (MEX) and Alejandra Valencia (MEX) with matching scores of 671. Team USA's Khatuna Lorig (West Hollywood, CA) holds fifth with 651, and Heather Koehl (Sheboygan Falls, WI) is in seventh with 631. In team qualifications, USA is first for the men, followed by Mexico and Cuba; on the women's side, the U.S. is within striking distance of first place team Mexico and ahead of Venezuela.
"I'm feeling strong and determined," said Leek of her first day of competition. "I had a great day, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow." Teammate Ellison, despite his Pan Am Games record, expressed dissatisfaction with the overall men's scores from the first day, stating: "I felt the whole field should have shot five points better. Hopefully I'll shoot better tomorrow, and break some more records."
Competition continues tomorrow with the second half of the 144-arrow, four distance ranking round; both men and women will compete at fifty and thirty meters. The action will heat up on Wednesday and throughout the rest of the week with team and individual elimination round match play. Follow USA Archery on Twitter and Facebook for updates and more: http://www.twitter.com/usaarchery and http://www.facebook.com/usaarchery. A link to complete results is available athttp://www.usarchery.org.
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