Las Vegas, NV - The Vegas Shoot, hosted by the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) is the first stop on the World Archery Festival's 3-Star Tour, and is also home to the finale of the Indoor Archery World Cup.
The first of three days opened with strong shooting from many top archers, but also included some shake-ups, particularly in the women's compound class. Holly Larson (USA) was the only archer to shoot "clean" after the first day, hitting a solid 300. She was joined in the top three by Kailey Johnston (USA) and Paige Pearce (USA), both junior archers. Also in the hunt for medals are collegiate standout Tristan Skarvan (USA), World Champion Albina Loginova (RUS) and Erika Jones (USA).
Jake Kaminski (USA) led the men's recurve after the first day, in a tight race with fellow Olympic medalist Michele Frangilli (ITA). Still too early to choose winners, it appears that Brady Ellison (USA) will make a run at the top spot after a very solid performance on day two in which he gained ground, along with Crispin Duenas (CAN) and Romain Girouille (FRA).
On the women's side, the members of the Mexican Olympic Team held on to two of the top three spots after day one, with Alejandra Valencia and Mariana Avitia shooting a strong 291 and 290, respectively. Sung Eun Jeon of Korea and Miranda Leek (USA) also appear to be in contention for medals, along with Naomi Folkard (GBR) and Berengere Schuh (FRA).
Jesse Broadwater (USA), tied for first with Chance Beaubouef (USA) and Levi Morgan (USA) in the men's compound, has proved himself a true "comeback kid." Broadwater reportedly withdrew from the Vegas Shoot and then re-entered after suffering a back injury, but showed no signs of slowing down on the shooting line Friday despite appearing to move a bit stiffly. Archers to watch include Pierre-Julien Deloche (FRA), Sergio Pagni (ITA), Nimes champion Reo Wilde (USA) and Braden Gellenthien (USA).
Adult archers will compete for three days at The Vegas Shoot, while youth trophies are awarded after the first two days of shooting. Several top Junior Olympic Archery Development (JOAD) athletes also had success at The Vegas Shoot, including Spencer Yee, Emily and Chris Bee, Jean-Luc Espinet, Ted Strychalski, Brian Bullis, Frankie Waters, Lexi Keller, Hunter Conley, Danny Button and Cinder Sexton.
USA Archery's coverage of The Vegas Shoot can be viewed on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/usaarchery) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/usaarchery). The Indoor Archery World Cup Final, featuring several top American athletes, will be live tonight beginning at 7 pm Pacific, at http://www.youtube.com/user/archerytv/featured?v=aNfUBtF5a_Y. To view all results, visit http://www.thevegasshoot.com.