Best in Medellin? Next-gen shines as three teenagers breakout

Lim Sihyeon won back-to-back World Cup stages.

It’s easy to find a theme when picking the best archers last week in Medellin.

Young women delivering huge performances – that was the storyline at stage three of the Hyundai Archery World Cup, as multiple new names collected inaugural podiums on the international circuit.

Lim Sihyeon wasn’t a first-timer. She won in May in China, taking a second consecutive stage in Colombia to remain unbeaten in her career so far Meanwhile, US archer Jennifer Mucino won her first two circuit medals individual bronze and gold in her first mixed team appearance. Lim and Mucino are both 20.

But they were outdone, perhaps upstaged, but a trio who are even younger…

16-year-old Angela Ruiz wins bronze in Medellin.

3. Angela Ruiz, Mexico

This 16-year-old already made an impression by winning Mexico’s first-ever team gold alongside Olympic medallist teammates Alejandra Valencia and Aida Roman in Antalya. Two stages later, Ruiz made her mark individually.

She pushed Korean top seed Lim until the very last arrow, battling back from two sets down to a force a shoot-off, only to lose it with an eight.

The match was incredible,” she said. “On that last arrow I just thought, ‘oh, air moved me’.

It wasn’t a win this time around – but surely, it won’t be long?

Aditi Gopichand Swami tops Medellin qualifying with U18 world record.

2. Aditi Swami, India

How about another emerging talent for India? Swami topped compound women’s qualifying in Medellin, raising the under-18 world record to 711 points in the process, and one day before her 17th birthday.

The circuit debutant put six points on the previous record, which was only set in May by Liko Arreola. (She might be mentioned below.)

Even though Swami couldn’t capitalise on her impressive qualifying, losing out in the third round of matchplay, she still claimed her first Hyundai Archery World Cup stage medal in Medellin – a bronze in the compound women’s team event, alongside Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Parneet Kaur.

Liko Arreola wins gold on circuit debut at only 15.

1. Liko Arreola, USA

At 15 years and 330 days, Arreola is now the youngest individual winner of a stage of the Hyundai Archery World Cup – an accolade she secured by beating the greatest of all time, seven-time Hyundai Archery World Cup Champion Sara Lopez, at home.

It wasn’t the only win, either – Arreola and teammates Alexis Ruiz and 16-year-old Olivia Dean also beat Lopez’s Colombia in the compound women’s team final.

Already a two-time champion of the Vegas Shoot indoors, it’s taken just one even for Arreola to prove she’s got chops outdoors, too.