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November 02, 2023

Another good day for the USA as all 10 march on to the quarterfinals in Chile

SANTIAGO, Chile – Day two of competition at the Pan Am Games was cut short due to inclement weather but it was more about the quality of archery rather than the quantity as all 10 USA archers fought their way through to the quarterfinals.

There was a surprise in the recurve men’s competition as world number one Marcus D’Almeida (BRA) was knocked out at the 1/8 stage, which means Jackson Mirich will instead tackle 17th seed Javier Alejandro Vega Valle (CUB) for a place in the last four.

Mirich defeated Andres Aguilar (CHI) 6-2, then overcame Santiago Arcila of Colombia 6-0 to set up a meeting with Vega Valle.

Defeat for D’Almeida means Brady Ellison is the highest seed remaining. The number two ranked archer eased through his two matches, powering past Adrian Munoz (PUR) 6-0 and Hugo Franco (CUB) 7-1. He will tackle Carlos Rojas (MEX) when individual competition resumes on Friday. The semifinals and medal matches in the individual recurve competition take place on Sunday.

Jack Williams and Mirich are on course to meet in the semifinals, should both come through their next match. Williams next faces Ricardo Soto (CHI) after beating Daniel Fernando Velarde Gonzales (PER) 6-2, and then Oscar Ticas (ESA) 7-3.

In the recurve women’s event, Jennifer Mucino-Fernandez and Catalina GNoriega could also meet in the semifinals but both must overcome tough opposition. Mucino-Fernandez takes on top seed Alejandra Valencia (MEX) in her quarterfinal. GNoriega, the 13th seed, meets eighth-seeded Ana Maria Rendon (COL). In the other half of the draw, Casey Kaufhold has Canada’s Virginie Chenier in the last eight.

Earlier, Mucino-Fernandez won both her matches 6-0, against Nancy Enriquez (EAI) and Maira Sepulveda (COL). GNoriega defeated Nilka Cotto (PUR) 6-0 and Valentina Vazquez (MEX) 6-2, with Kaufhold conquering Marcela Cortez (ESA) 6-0 and then Daniela Chacon (VEN) 6-4.

Elimination rounds in the compound competition began at the 1/8 round, which meant just the one match for the four US archers to navigate. Kris Schaff – who set a new Pan American record during qualification – was pushed hard by Tristan Spicer-Moran (CAN), winning 149-148. Sawyer Sullivan saw off Sebastian Garcia (MEX) 147-145.

Schaff faces Jean Pizarro (PUR) in Friday’s quarterfinals. Sullivan tackles Alejandro Patricio Martin Arriagada (CHI).

Alexis Ruiz posted the best score of the 1/8 round in the compound women’s competition, shooting 149 to defeat Beatriz Aliaga Hurtado (PER) 149-141. She will meet Paola Ramirez (PUR) in the last eight. Olivia Dean overcame Maria Jose Zebadua (EAI) 145-143, and next meets Dafne Quintero (MEX), a match between the fourth and fifth seeds.

The individual compound quarterfinals also take place on Friday. The semifinals and medal matches are scheduled for Saturday.

Weather intervened on Thursday afternoon, which means that the mixed team competition has been pushed to Friday afternoon. In recurve , the USA pairing of Ellison and Kaufhold have a bye until the quarterfinals, with Cuba or the U.S. Virgin Islands their opponents. Schaff and Ruiz start their push for gold in the compound with a match against host nation Chile.

A reminder that the Pan Am Games offers an opportunity for the USA to gain a quota slot for the men for next year’s Olympic Games in Paris. For that quota slot to be secured, Ellison and Kaufhold would need to be the highest placed mixed team or Ellison, Mirich or Williams would have to reach the gold medal match in the individual event.

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