Antalya, Turkey: Team USA’s compound archers went three for three with gold medals in team round competition today, followed by silver and bronze for the women’s and men’s recurve teams, respectively. Today’s performance was a fitting end to a standout week for the American team at the second stage of the Archery World Cup in Antalya, Turkey.
In the compound mixed team match, Team USA’s Christie Colin and Braden Gellenthien teamed up to face off against Italy for the gold medal. Though Italy opened by taking the lead after the first end, the U.S. team narrowed the gap on the second end and answered the Italian team with back to back 40s on the third and fourth ends to clinch the gold medal.
This is the second consecutive compound mixed team gold for the U.S. in the 2011 World Cup series, with Christie Colin as the female anchor on both teams. Noted World Archery commentator Thomas Aubert: “The US pair shot eleven 10s in a row – Gellenthien didn’t shoot out of the 10 ring in the whole match – and took the victory by 3 points.”
Weather became a factor during today’s matches, particularly heavy rain, but conditions improved for the compound women’s team gold medal match. The U.S. women’s compound team of Colin, Jamie Van Natta and Kailey Johnston began their team gold medal final against Iran, a team they met in Antalya and Shanghai last year, with mixed results.
Today, the teams began with an initial one point deficit in favor of Iran, but the U.S. stayed strong with a perfect 60 in the second end to take the lead. In the third end, Team USA gained three more points, and closed out the fourth end and the match with another 60, winning the gold medal 229-221. In the bronze medal match, it was Venezuela taking their first ever World Cup medal with a 224-217 victory over the team from France.
For the compound men, the bronze match was a matchup between Italy and South Africa, with Italy winning a narrow victory, 233-231 over their opponent. In the gold medal match, it was the U.S. team of individual gold medalist Rodger Willett, Jr., Reo Wilde and Braden Gellenthien facing off against Denmark once again; the U.S. won their last gold medal contest in Porec last month.
Under worsening weather conditions, the U.S. established a one point initial lead in the first end, and increased it in the second, bringing the score to 117-114. Though Denmark came back in the third end, both teams tied the fourth – Denmark shooting their last arrow with just one second remaining – and it was the U.S. who won the gold medal, 231-230.
Following a bronze medal victory for India over Ukraine in the women’s recurve team bronze medal match, the U.S. team of Khatuna Lorig, Jennifer Nichols and Miranda Leek took to the field in their first-ever appearance in a World Cup gold medal final, this time against the team from Korea.
The U.S. women started out strong, tying Korea during the first end, but extremely difficult weather conditions made this match a challenge for both teams. Korea had a solid second end, allowing them to establish a commanding lead which they never relinquished. Despite the U.S. team’s best efforts, Korea took the match, giving the U.S. recurve women their first-ever World Cup silver medal, 207-190.
The final meeting for Team USA was the men’s recurve team bronze medal match, in which Brady Ellison, Joe Fanchin and Jacob Wukie shot against the team from Great Britain. Though their opponents opened with a three point lead, 57-54, the American team refocused their efforts, gaining ground over the next three ends to clinch the bronze medal victory, 218-215. This win gives number two world ranked Ellison his second medal in this event, following Saturday’s gold medal victory in the individual final.
Other results from today’s matches included France’s first ever gold medal victory in the recurve men’s team event, winning 217-211 in their match versus Japan. In the recurve mixed team event, it was India shooting against China for the gold medal; China ended with a 136 for the win, to Japan’s 133.
Team USA was coached by National Head Coach KiSik Lee at this event, assisted by Michael Usherenko and Mel Nichols. The team was lead by Cindy Bevilacqua. USA Archery extends thanks to the United States Olympic Committee for its support of the recurve teams at this World Cup event, and thanks the Easton Foundations for its support of the compound teams. The World Cup excitement continues in August as the series comes to Ogden, Utah for its third stage. Complete results and event schedules may be found at http://www.archery.org.