Team USA will play for the bronze medal on Saturday morning at the 2013 World Wheelchair Championship in Sochi, Russia.
After winning the Page playoff 3-4 game earlier today, Patrick McDonald (Madison, Wis.) and teammates David Palmer (Mashpee, Mass.), Jimmy Joseph (New Hartford, N.Y.), Penny Greely (Green Bay, Wis.) and Meghan Lino (East Falmouth, Mass.) lost to Canada's Jim Armstrong, 6-3, in the semifinal tonight at the Ice Cube Curling Center.
With the win, Canada moves on to tomorrow's final to square off against Sweden, to whom they lost to 6-5 in the Page playoff 1-2 game. The bronze medal game also will be a rematch of the Page 3-4 game as the Americans will take on China's Haitao Wang. The medal games will both stream live at http://russiasport.ru. The U.S. game is set for 9:30 a.m. Sochi time (11:30 p.m. CT). The gold medal game will be played at 2:30 p.m. (4:30 a.m. CT).
"Nothing, we'd play it the same way," McDonald said when asked if the team would have played any part of the semifinal game differently. McDonald credited Armstrong's curling experience, as well as his teammates, who have played in several world championships and Paralympic Games. "Jim's played in the Brier [Canadian men's national championship]. He's been playing longer than I've been alive," McDonald, 45, said and laughed.
"In the first game [against Canada], we were timid and didn't take chances. In the China [playoff] game we were solid and carried that confidence over," said McDonald, a United States Army veteran. "The shots that we were playing needed to be played to pressure on a team like that [Canada]. And we executed. We were confident and giggling. As the game went on the shots he was leaving us were a little more difficult than the first few ends ... but we didn't back down and kept on playing. I'm confident with the way we played, and I wouldn't change a thing. I think we'll be ready for tomorrow."
Tied 1-1 after two ends, Canada earned its first deuce when Armstrong made a takeout with the final rock. The Americans settled for a single in the fourth end to cut the lead to 3-2 at the halfway mark. McDonald's final promotion takeout of the fifth end didn't go as planned and Armstrong had a draw for a second deuce to extend the lead to 5-2. Canada stole a single in the sixth when the Americans struggled to remove a Canadian rock in the back of the four-foot. The U.S. got in trouble again in the seventh end but McDonald slipped his final stone through a port to convert a perfect tap-back on a Canadian stone in the back four-foot to score a single. The U.S. tried in earnest to set up a big steal in the eighth end but ran out of rocks when Canadian vice skip Dennis Thiessen made a takeout to seal the win.
Both the U.S. (2008) and China (2012) have won the bronze medal once at this event. Sweden is seeking its first gold medal. Canada, with Armstrong as skip, won titles in 2011 and 2009 as well as Paralympic gold in 2010 (also with Armstrong) and 2006.
Follow live scores and shot-by-shot at http://wwhcc2013.curlingevents.com/livescores.
Live coverage of all games on Sheet C can be viewed worldwide at The next live game won't be until the semifinals and then the medal games as the Page games are on sheets where cameras are not situated.
Video highlights can be found at http://wwhcc2013.curlingevents.com/video. Results, news and photos from the 2013 World Wheelchair Curling Championship can be found at http://wwhcc2013.curlingevents.com.