FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 6, 2006
USA's Smotek Takes Gold at World Cup USA
KERRVILLE, Texas - The USA's Connie Smotek (Lyons, Texas) won the gold medal in women's skeet today at the World Cup USA in Kerrville, Texas. In front of her home-state crowd, Smotek shot a 91 total score to win the first Shotgun event of the World Cup.
"It was very neat to win in front of a local crowd," Smotek said after the match. "This is the first international match that my husband has seen me shoot, and the first international match that my parents have seen me shoot since the '92 Olympics. The fact that I won made it just that much more special."
Smotek actually found herself in a tie after she shot the 100 target course. Qualifying with a 68 and a hitting a 23 in the final, she ended up in a two-way tie with Russia's Svetlana Demina for first place. Smotek held in there and after the Demina missed her fourth target, she was finally named the champion. Danka Bartekova, from Slovakia, finished in third with a 67 qualifying score and a 23 in the finals.
"It just goes to show that you can't give up," Smotek said. "I didn't get a stellar start on my first round, but I just kept myself focused on what I needed to do to win. It's not over until the last shot is fired, and the competition today proved that."
The other U.S. women's skeet shooters, Haley Dunn (Eddyville, Iowa) and Brandie Neal (Spencer, Ind.) finished in eighth and 25th place, respectively, winning the women's skeet team event, as well.
The men's skeet event finishes up tomorrow. The USA's 16-year-old shooting phenom, Vincent Hancock (Eatonton, Ga.) is currently sitting in a good position to medal with a 49 out