(TWO HARBORS, Minn.) - After winning five mixed team titles, Seattle's Brady and Cristin Clark can now add mixed doubles championship to their growing resume after defeating the defending champions 8-7 Sunday afternoon at the 2009 U.S. Mixed Doubles Championship at the Two Harbors Curling Club.
With the win over Nate and Jamie Haskell (White Bear Lake, Minn.), the Clarks will now represent the U.S. at the 2009 World Mixed Doubles Championship April 17-25 in Cortina, Italy.
"I feel fantastic," Brady Clark said after the win. "I got the chills just thinking about the opportunity to represent the USCA in Italy. This is something Cristin and I have thought about for a long time."
The Clarks got off to a shaky start in the first end when Cristin Clark accidentally bumped the Haskell stone in second position closer to the button than her own. Brady Clark eventually made a runback to remove it but was only able to score one point. Jamie Haskell gave up a steal of one in the next end trying to make a double takeout. They'd take the lead in the next end, however, when Cristin Clark missed two key shots, allowing the Haskells to set up a big end. Brady Clark made a come around draw into the four foot that looked like it might set up a steal but Haskell chipped it out to score three.
A couple of half-shots by the Haskells in the fourth end resulted in a takeout to score four points for the Clarks. The woes continued for the defending champions as the Clarks got two stones around the four foot behind a guard early that Nate Haskell couldn't remove. Jamie was forced to attempt a runback and couldn't convert, giving up a steal of two.
"Nate and Jamie are both great curlers so when they came back with that three we knew we had to score," Brady Clark said. "Getting the four points then really changed the momentum in our favor."
The Haskells had an opportunity for a big end in the sixth until Brady Clark made a double takeout putting the pressure on Jamie Haskell again. She made the takeout but rolled her shooter, only scoring one.
"We had a little bit of difficulty with our weight. We were a little heavy on some shots and would have liked to have played some angles a little better," Nate Haskell said. "They played really well and capitalized on our mistakes."
The Haskells stole two points in the seventh end to pull within two points. Needing to steal two more to set up an extra end, Jamie Haskell tried to draw around stones into the four foot but wrecked on a stone in the top of the house. Not needing to throw their final stone, Brady and Cristin Clark clinched the championship title.
*Clark 110 420 00 8
Haskell 003 001 21 7
*last rock in first end
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