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MEDELLIN, Colombia - USA's incredible streak at the 2018 Pan American Championships continued today with elimination and finals matches for several youth and masters categories. These archers self-funded their way to Colombia for this great international event experience and performed well to earn top honors.
In the junior recurve bracket, 7th seed Alex Gilliam upset 2nd seed Costa of Brazil 6-2 in the quarterfinals with only one arrow outside of the gold rings over four straight sets. Then, head to head with teammate Jackson Mirich, Gilliam took the match to the full five sets, pulling out the 6-4 win in the final arrows. Facing Colombia's Arcila for gold, Gilliam was down 4-0, but then brought the match back, forcing a 5-5 tie and one arrow shoot off. Both archers scored 9s, but it was Gilliam's that was closer to the center, earning him the gold. Mirich took a tough 7-3 bronze match loss to Cox of Canada to finish 4th.
Katherine Wu qualified 2nd for the recurve junior women and had a long battle to the finish. Her semifinal match against Colombia's Acosta Giraldo went the full five sets, resulting in a shoot off where Wu's 9 was just a bit further out than her opponent's. In a bronze medal matchup with Colombia's Posada, Wu again forced a full five set match and shoot off, but this time a perfect 10 gave her the victory and the podium finish.
On his way to represent USA at the Youth Olympic Games this fall, 7th seed Trenton Cowles outscored cadet recurve teammate Dallas Jones in the 1/8th, upset 2nd seed Benitez of Paraguay in the quarterfinals 7-1, 3rd seed Lee of Canada in the semifinals 6-4 and then took a gold medal match with top seed Vaca of Mexico to a one arrow shoot off. An 8 to Vaca's 10 gave Cowles the silver finish after an impressive performance. USA's Nikhil Murali qualified 8th and went out 6-2 in the quarterfinals to Vaca. In the women's bracket, 9th seed Ramsey Lechner and 14th seed Sydney Burke fell 6-2 and 6-0 in the first round.
Andre Shelby, who finished 4th for the para compound open men yesterday ranked 1st for the compound master men's bracket in today's events. With a bye into the semifinals, a decisive 143-126 semifinal win, and then a close 140-139 finish, Shelby clinched the gold.
Para compound open women Teresa Wallace and Martha Chavez joined USA's Marcia Falks and Jennifer Lee Wong for the compound master women's competition, with Wallace taking a semifinal win 129-106 over Wong and Chavez winning 129-116 over Falks. In the gold medal matchup, Chavez took an early lead, up 52-48 after two ends, but Wallace brought the match back to a tie 75-75 in the next three arrows and then picked up a point with just three arrows to go, ultimately taking the gold win 125-124. In the bronze final, Falks suffered a rough first end, down 4 points and Wong continued with her lead, taking the win 112-109.
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