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NEWBERRY, Florida - The World Archery Championships - U.S. Team Trials concluded today with round robin matches for the top eight archers in each division after qualifications at the AAE Arizona Cup and the Easton Foundations Gator Cup. Archers competed in round robin matches, where they shoot a head to head match against each of the other archers in their division. Archers then earned points based on qualification scores, matches won, and a three-arrow average score. The wind was very strong today and many slots came down to final arrows to determine the team.
Mackenzie Brown (Flint, Texas) out and out won the recurve women's division, clinching the top spot with a wide margin. Khatuna Lorig (Denver, Colorado) also locked down her spot on the team, while the third slot was much more hotly contested between LaNola Shepherd (Lehi, Utah) and Eliana Claps (Everett, Washington). The two were so tight in the rankings through the last match of the day. Ultimately, the two were ranked evenly and had to do a tie-breaker match. Still, incredibly close, the match went to a 5-5 tie and a one arrow shoot off. Claps took the win, marking her first senior U.S. World Team.
The compound women's team is a younger squad, with Paige Pearce Gore (Red Bluff, California) locking up the top spot, followed by Lexi Keller (Omro, Wisconsin) and Cassidy Cox (Albuquerque, New Mexico). Cox just competed last weekend at her first outdoor Archery World Cup, and will join friend Keller and Gore in Mexico City, Mexico for the Championships this fall.
An experienced men's squad of Brady Ellison (Globe, Arizona), Jake Kaminski (Gainesville, Florida) and Thomas Stanwood (Raynham, Massachusetts) will round out the recurve team after a tight match for the final slot. Coming down to the last match, Matt Requa (Houston, Texas) and Steve Sun (Alhambra, California) were also incredibly close, while Sun took the alternate slot after the final arrows.
Braden Gellenthien (Hudson, Massachusetts) leads the compound men's team of Steve Anderson (Bountiful, Utah) and Kris Schaff (Billings, Montana), who were all clear leaders in the trials today. Armless Archer Matt Stutzman (Stockport, Iowa) made a strong run at the team, finishing 5th after tying Reo Wilde (Pocatello, Idaho), who locked up the alternate slot with a higher three arrow average.
"I'm happy to see great archers selected to the team," commented National Head Coach Ki Sik Lee. "The women's divisions were really heated and I'm especially excited by the young women's group for the compound archers. There is a lot of potential there. I'm excited to see our country do well, and overall happy to see all the archers performing well in these hard weather conditions. I feel good about our team for the World Championships."
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