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August 31, 2023

Olympic Trials Qualification underway as USA Archery honors a legend at Outdoor Nationals

MALVERN, Pa. – Day one of competition at the 139th USA Archery Target Nationals and U.S. Open was a busy one, during which qualification for all divisions sat either side of a presentation to a legend of the sport.

Braden Gellenthien brought down the curtain on his international career earlier this month with the World Cup Stage #4 in Paris. On Thursday, USA Archery recognized his outstanding contribution to Team USA, which began in 2002 and brought him winning a total of 77 World Cup medals, more than any other archer in World Cup history.

A cooler morning session brought barebow and all 50+ categories. After a brief pause to give thanks to Gellenthien, compound, recurve and all para categories stepped out as the temperature rose for their qualification session.

Brady Ellison and Casey Kaufhold topped the recurve men and women respectively after 72 arrows, with both mindful that the next few days will also form Stage #1 2024 Olympic Trials Qualification. Stage #2 takes place on Sunday as a stand-alone event.

After a second 72 arrows on Friday, the list of Olympic hopefuls will be cut to the top 16 men and top 16 women. Within that range at the moment is Olympic champion Justin Huish, who sits 13th at the halfway stage.

Trenton Cowles, Jackson Mirich and Jack Williams all sit immediately behind Ellison, while ninth to 18th in the recurve women are separated by just 10 points.

Mathias Fullerton of Denmark topped the compound scoring after Thursday’s action, just one point better than James Lutz (707).

Paige Pearce set the pace in the compound women, shooting 693, closely followed by Danelle Wentzel-Lutz, Alexis Ruiz and Tanja Gellenthien.

In the barebow division, John Demmer III fired 641, which was 11 points ahead of Matt Hudson. Johana Czako and Diane Cochran both scored 607 in the barebow women, with Czako leading courtesy of shooting more 10s.

Demmer II and Czako combined in the mixed teams competition to claim gold. Among the beaten semifinalists were veteran Richard Stonebraker and newcomer Francesca Benavidez, who went by the name 1773, on account of their ages!

The recurve 50+ mixed team event was won by Mark Williams and Susan Bock, while Kevin Kime and Carrie Lin took top honors in the compound 50+ mixed team competition.

All of the latest scores and results can be found on BetweenEnds, with action images added daily throughout the event.

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