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IGUAZU FALLS, Argentina - Nineteen archers shooting in recurve and compound divisions from cadet through master classes headed to Argentina this week for a World Ranking Event. After facing some of the toughest competition in the Americas, the U.S. earned three medals and great international experience.
"This tournament was a great training and competition event for the young, and not so young USA competitors and their coaches," commented Team Leader, Coach Laval D Falks. "They competed against some of the best in Central and South America including some of the Olympians who used this event as a final tune-up before traveling to Rio for the 2016 Games. Great job all around. Many personal bests were scored and Mackenzie Kormann earned her Bronze Olympian pin in the Ranking Round!"
He added: "World Ranking Events allow more archers and coaches the opportunity to gain experience in high-level international competition without having to qualify for a world team or be selected for the International Team Staff."
Competition was tough during the 72 arrow qualification. Junior recurve male Dillon McMenamy qualified 5th while Alice Buswell ended up 1st in the junior recurve women's division with Bethany Phillips close behind in 3rd.
McMenamy was upset in the quarterfinal in a close one-arrow shoot-off by Brazil's Drean Silva. Phillips went on to win bronze over Brazil's Maria Baros De Costa while Buswell fought her way to the gold final where she was narrowly defeated by No. 2 seed Oriana Carbone of Argenita to finish with silver.
Buswell had a chance for redemption in the mixed team gold final where she and McMenamy met Carbone and Ignacio Escalante. Buswell and McMenamy defeated the team from Argentinia in straight sets 6-0 to win the gold.
Dominic Leung qualified 14th for the cadet recurve men in a tough field while cadet recurve women Savannah Ward and Jordan Lyons were 4th and 11th respectively. Leung and Lyons were both eliminated in the 1/8th elimination. Ward advanced to the bronze final but finished 4th overall. Ward and Leung also finished 4th in the mixed team event in a close match.
Jennifer Wong represented the USA as the only competitor in the master recurve women's division, while Wesley Wilhelm and Alex Wong qualified 2nd and 6th for the men. Wong was defeated in the quarterfinal by Argentina's Hector Bruno. Wilhelm then defeated Bruno in the semifinal to meet Bulgaria's Ivan Yotov for the gold. Yotov took the win leaving Wilhelm with the silver.
Marcia Falks shot in the compound senior women's division, qualifying 7th, and was eventually eliminated by gold medal finisher Sara Lopez of Colombia. Mackenzie Kormann was the sole entrant in the compound cadet women's division. She shared her bow with compound cadet male Archer Merritt, who's bow did not arrive in time for competition. The two would alternate sights on the same bow, shooting on opposite lines. Despite the technical challenge, Merritt qualified 3rd, drawing a large crowd of impressed spectators.
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