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American Cogdell earns a bronze

By The Associated Press
Posted Sunday, August 10, 2008 5:56 PM ET

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BEIJING (AP) - Satu MAKELA-NUMMELA won the gold medal in women's trap shooting Monday, hitting 21 targets in the finals to set an Olympic record.

"I did not believe I would win today," she said. "It is amazing."

Makela-Nummela hit the first 11 targets of the finals before missing two in a row. She got back on track after that, missing two shots the rest of the way. Makela-Nummela finished with a final score of 91.

"During finals I was quite relaxed," she said. "So it wasn't that bad."

Zuzana STEFECEKOVA of Slovakia, who was tied for the lead with Makela-Nummela entering the finals, finished with 89 targets for the silver.

Four shooters competed in a shoot-off to decide the bronze medal. Daina Gudzineviciute of Lithuania, Elena Struchaeva of Kazakhstan and Japan's Yukie Nakayama missed before American Corey Cogdell hit the target to take third place.

At 21, Cogdell was the youngest shooter in the finals, entering the last session one point off the lead. She struggled early but finished strong to force the shootout. It was a good performance from the Alaskan who finished 50th at the 2007 World Championships.

"I didn't even expect to be at these Olympic games," Cogdell said.

Makela-Nummela's victory followed teammate Henri Hakkinen's bronze medal in men's 10-meter air rifle earlier in the day.

China's LIU Yingzi was a favorite to win, but did not make the finals after hitting 63 targets in the qualification rounds.

"I think it was home pressure why she's not in the finals," Makela-Nummela said.

 


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