CURLING: USA holds off China to improve to 3-1 at World Men's Championship

April 07, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 7, 2008 USA holds off China to improve to 3-1 at 2008 World Men's Championship (GRAND FORKS, N.D.) - Craig Brown and Team USA scooped themselves out of China's wok as they held off a late rally by Fengchung Wang's team Monday morning at the 2008 World Men's Curling Championship. Brown (Madison, Wis.) and teammates Rich Ruohonen (Brooklyn Park, Minn.), John Dunlop (Milwaukee, Wis.), Pete Annis (Owatonna, Minn.) and Kevin Kakela (Rolla, N.D.) clinched the win with a single in an extra end to improve to 3-1. "All of this will just help us at the end," Annis said about the closeness of today's game. After building an 8-3 lead with back-to-back steals, the Americans allowed China to get right back in the game as the Chinese skip, who had been shooting just 33 percent after six ends, started to heat things up. Wang was forced to draw for one in the seventh end to cut the lead to 8-4. But the U.S. would give three points back to the Chinese, who are making their Men's World Championship debut, when Brown's final stone in the eighth end was wide and heavy as it slid to the back of the house. "Their skip really came on strong late," said Kakela, the team's alternate, who came into the game after the seventh end. "He made some really touch shots where you had to be precise." The U.S. got two stones in the four-foot late in the ninth end until Wang doubled them out. Brown made a double as well to clear out the house. Wang placed his final stone in the back of the four foot behind a center guard. Brown followed him in with the takeout to blank the end. The Americans had hoped to keep the house relatively open in the 10th end but that didn't turn out to be the case as stones kept building up. Wang made a tap-back on his stone hanging off the side of the button to grab shot rock. Brown attempted to wick off of his own stone in the side of the house and roll to the button but it didn't curl enough. "We felt fine going into an extra end if we needed to so that's why we went with that shot," Kakela said. "We didn't want to give them two." The U.S. did a better job in the extra end as Brown, who has seemingly had his draw weight in his back pocket for most of the week, sealed the win. Live webstreaming of the 2008 World Men's Championship can be found at www.wcsn.com or ww.curltv.com. CBS College Sports Network will air a two-hour program from the 2008 Men's Worlds from 8-10 p.m. ET on May 1. The U.S. returns to action at 7 p.m. CT against Denmark (1-2). Game scores: USA 9, China 8; Germany 9, Czech Republic 7; Scotland 5, France 4; Norway 9, Switzerland 8 USA line score: USA 010 223 000 01 9 *China 201 000 130 10 8 *last stone in first end Standings: Germany 4-0 Canada 3-0 USA 3-1 Czech Republic 2-2 France 2-2 Norway 2-2 Scotland 2-2 Australia 1-2 Denmark 1-2 Sweden 1-2 China 1-3 Switzerland 0-4 USA Curling is sponsored by AIT Worldwide Logistics, AmerAust Technologies and Nike. (30) For more information: Terry Kolesar, USA Curling, terry.kolesar@usacurl.org, 715-344-1199, Ext. 202, or 608-338-9900 (cell).
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