BANGKOK — With archers competing in three medal matches today at the 2013 World Para Archery Championships in Bangkok, Thailand, Team USA had high hopes for gold but ended the day with two silver medals.
Paralympic champion Jeff Fabry (Tulare, Calif.) competed against Jean-Pierre Antonios of Finland for the compound men W1 title. Fabry took an immediate strong lead but by the final set Antonios had closed the gap to only a single point. While Fabry shot three arrows into the gold, Antonios fired off two 10s to claim the win.
Fabry, who last year became the first U.S. archer to win Olympic or Paralympic gold since 1996, settled for silver in his first major competition since the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
The compound women's team of Martha Chavez (Lemoore, Calif.), D'Arce Hess (Davis, Calif.) and Ashlee Sheppard (San Francisco, Calif.) shot for gold against defending champion team, the Russian Federation. The match went back and forth for the first half with the Team USA keeping scores in check. However, a low third set and a miss in the final three arrows clinched the silver for Team USA, leaving the crown with the reigning champions from Russia.
The men's compound open team also had a shot at bronze in an intense match-up with Slovakia. The American squad of Fabry, Jeff Sena (Lindsay, Calif.) and Lance Thornton (Stotts City, Mo.) had already climbed the ranks from their sixth place qualification score to make the medal rounds.
With the first six arrows, Team USA took an impressive three point lead with a 57. Slovakia brought the score back to a tie after the second set and the two teams matched each other arrow for arrow for the next 12 shots. Tied after each of the final three sets, the U.S. and Slovakia entered a heated shoot-off. Slovakia's 9-9-10 took the win and the bronze medal.
Competition resumes Thursday with mixed team finals and recurve team and individual finals.