Canadian Archers Claim Double Gold & Olympic Quota Place at Pan Am Games
OTTAWA (Archery Canada) – The Canadian archery team put an exclamation point on a sensational Pan American Games competition on Sunday with a trio of medals, two of them gold, and an Olympic quota place secured a year out of Tokyo 2020.
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Lima 2019: Results
The highly-successful day started with Crispin Duenas of Scarborough, Ont., Eric Peters of Ottawa and Brian Maxwell of Vancouver edging Chile 5-4 in a shoot-off (27-24) in the men’s recurve team final.
It marked Canada’s best result in the men’s team event since archery made its Pan Am Games debut back in 1979, surpassing silver-medal finishes in 1979 (San Juan, Puerto Rico), 1983 (Caracas, Venezuela), 1999 (Winnipeg) and 2007 (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil).
Later in the afternoon, Duenas and Peters added gold and bronze in men’s individual recurve thanks to triumphs over Brazilians Marcus D’Almeida, 6-4, and Bernardo Oliveira, 7-1, respectively.
Duenas became only the second Canadian archer to be crowned Pan Am Games individual champion. The three-time Olympian joined Robert Rusnov, who, in 1995 in Mar Del Plata, Argentina, won a pair of events that are no longer part of the Games program, the men’s recurve 70 and 90-metre competitions.
“I’m just so happy. It’s years of hard work… everything, just everything,” said the 33-year-old Duenas, who now has four Pan Am Games medals to his name. “I got silver in 2007, that was team, and then silver in 2011, individual, and I just beat both of them in one day.”
Peters was equally proud of his final performance of the Games, two days after he scored a stunning 6-0 upset against top-ranked and world record holder Brady Ellison of the USA in the quarter-finals.
“It’s nice shooting 30 to close things,” said the 22-year-old, who earlier on Sunday had lost his semifinal match by a 2-6 score to Duenas. “It’s hard to shoot against your teammates but I’m happy he’s gone for gold and I guarantee he’s happy for me for getting bronze here, shooting as well as I did.”
In the individual final, Duenas, seeded fourth entering the ranking phase, delivered a 10 with his last arrow to tie the fifth set and take the match against his second-seeded Brazilian opponent. Before defeating D’Almeida and Peters in the Final Four, the new champ had ousted Ecuador’s Alejandro Ortegon Morales in the first round (6-0), Cuba’s Hugo Franco in the round of 16 (7-1) and Colombia’s Daniel Felipe Pineda, the No. 5 seed, in the quarters (6-2).
On his way to the bronze medal, the ninth-seeded Peters beat Ecuador’s Jose Alvarez in his opener (6-2), Mexico’s Ernesto Boardman in the round of 16 (7-3) and Ellison in the quarters, before being stopped by his teammate Duenas.
For his part, Maxwell, 26th after the qualification stage, lost his opening confrontation 0-6 against seventh-seeded Luis Alvarez of Mexico and finished in 17th position.
In the men’s team final, Canada led 4-0 after the first two rounds before Chile came back to tie the affair over the next two. In the shoot-off, the Chileans shot three eights, while the Canadians put down a nine, an eight, and then a perfect 10 by Duenas to close out the match.
“I don’t know what I can say about that shot. It was everything I train for and it came together so I’m happy,” said Duenas. “For me this has been a long time coming. I won a team silver medal in 2007, so I’m really happy to be able to pony this one up and get a gold. We’ve been together as unit for a few months now and we have really begun to feed off each other, which helps us perform at our best.”
“This shoot-off was our second one this year,” added Peters. “We knew we had done it before at the World Cup and what we had to do and even though it didn’t go our way that time, it sure worked out for us today.”
En route to gold, the Canadian threesome, fourth going into the ranking round, had also defeated No. 5 Cuba in the quarters (6-2) and the top-seeded USA in the semis (5-1).
“I couldn’t feel more proud of the team. We came through strong and pulled out the gold. Then getting to stand up there on the podium together and sing along to O Canada was just awesome,” said Maxwell. “We can’t be more thankful to the fans who have come all the way down here to help cheer us on and our fellow Canadian athletes in the stands cheering us on, their support made a big difference.”
Canada, which has secured a quota place in men’s individual for the 2020 Summer Olympics, has now won a total of 29 archery medals (4-10-15) at the Pan American Games since 1979.
In other archery action in Lima, Winnipeg’s Bryanne Lameg, the lone Canadian competing in compound, finished the women’s tournament in fifth position after falling 144-147 in the quarter-finals to Paige Pearce of the USA, the eventual bronze medallist. Lameg was also fifth after the qualification stage thanks to a score of 689.
In women’s individual recurve, Virginie Chénier of Laval, Que., was the top Canuck with a ninth-place finish, with teammates Stephanie Barrett of Mississauga, Ont., and Mariessa Pinto of Abbotsford, B.C., sharing the 17th spot.
Going into the ranking round as the 16th seed, Chénier was the only member of the trio to win her opening head-to-head duel, defeating Stephany Jerez of the Dominican Republic by 6-2. She then fell 1-7 in the round of 16 to Mexico’s Alejandra Valencia, the top seed and eventual Pan Am champion.
In the mixed team recurve tourney, Barrett and Duenas helped fourth-seeded Canada reach the bronze-medal match, where the pair dropped a heartbreaking 3-5 decision to No. 2 Mexico after falling 2-6 in the semifinals to the top-seeded United States team, which went on to capture gold. The Canadians had previously outscored El Salvador 5-3 in the quarters.
In the women’s team event, Barrett, Chénier and Pinto qualified in fourth position but were dropped 0-6 by fifth-seeded Brazil in the quarterfinals, en route to a seventh-place finish.