Jack Williams competes during the men's recurve team finals at the 2021 World Archery Championships on Sept. 24, 2021 in Yankton, South Dakota.
The gulf between Brady Ellison and Jack Williams was a wide one heading into their gold-medal matchup Thursday at the Archery World Cup Final, but the match was decided by the slimmest of margins as Williams upset his U.S. teammate in a shoot-off for his first career title.
Ellison, the world No. 1 going for his sixth world cup title, got off to a 4-0 lead after two sets over Williams, ranked No. 11 and in search of his first world cup victory. But Williams slowly clawed his way back into the match, hitting three 10s in the fifth set and forcing a shoot-off. It took one more 10 to secure the upset, the first major international title for the 21-year-old from Chula Vista, California.
The win caps off the best season yet for Williams, who only began competing in archery at the age of 14. Williams scored his best world cup stage finish when he placed second in Paris in June. He then made his Olympic debut in Tokyo, competing in both individual and in team with Ellison and Jacob Wukie. Williams won team gold and an individual bronze medal at the 2018 Pan American Championships.
On the women’s side, Casey Kaufhold and Mackenzie Brown each fell in the quarterfinals. In the non-Olympic compound division, Team USA’s Braden Gellenthein was second and Kris Schaff third in the men’s individual competition.