Joe Asay of Sandy returned from Finland this week as the world's indoor archery champion, compound division.

Asay headed a 12-member U.S. team - three men and three women in the recurve and compound divisions - that competed in the first World Indoor Championships in Oulu, Finland last weekend.Asay and the others were selected for the team during a three-day trials competition in January at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado.

"This is my biggest win," Asay, who took first place at the Salt Palace Indoor in 1990, said.

A qualifying round trimmed the field to 16 archers in each category. Asay finished fourth after the preliminary competition.

That was followed by four elimination rounds with the pairings the same as with the regional basketball tournaments in the NCAA - No. 1 against No. 16, No. 2 against No. 15 etc.

Interestingly, in the third elimination round Asay was pitted against another Utahn, Jim Fowles of Kearns, who won the preliminary competition and therefore was seeded No. 1. Asay won that duel and then the final elimination to get the championship. Dan Kolb of Casper, Wyo., finished second and Fowles third.

"This is the first time the U.S. has swept a world tournament since 1959," Asay said.

Asay was the lone winner for the United States. In the men's recurve division former Olympian Jay Barrs took second and in the women's compound division Glenda Doran of Bend, Ore. took third.

Asay, 24, has been shooting for about 10 years and is a member of the Utah Hot Shots.