CURLING: New York serves up upset special at 2008 U.S. Junior Nationals

Feb. 03, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Feb. 3, 2008 New York upsets Minnesota 2 at 2008 Junior Nationals (PORTAGE, Wis.) - The New York junior men's team served up an upset special Sunday afternoon upending Minnesota 2's Aaron Wald team, 9-7, at the 2008 USA Curling Junior National Championships in Portage, Wis. Brandon Corbett (Rochester, N.Y.) and his upstart New York team are on top of the leaderboard along with the defending champions from Minnesota led by Chris Plys at 2-0. Corbett and teammates Chris Bond (Henrietta, N.Y.), Derek Corbett (Rochester, N.Y.) and Kell Orlando (Seneca Falls, N.Y.) scored a deuce in the ninth end to take an 8-7 advantage heading into the 10th end. Wald's team from northern Minnesota had a good end set up until Derek Corbett made a cross-house double takeout to put his team in better position. Wald needed to remove a New York stone partially buried behind a guard in the four-foot to force an extra end but couldn't get enough of the stone to remove it and gave up the steal and the win. "We feel wonderful ... but a little scared because we could be playing better," said Brandon Corbett, 19. "We feel like the only way we're going to win is if it is close," his brother, Derek Corbett, 16, added. New York built a 3-0 lead early on until Wald drew in for three points in the fourth end to tie the game. A steal of two for Wald and his teammates Ben Wilson, Jared Zezel and John Muller gave them their first lead of the game. New York answered with a deuce and a steal of one in the following end to take the lead back. The teams exchanged deuces to set up the final end. "We'd like to place in the top four," Brandon Corbett said of the team's goal for the competition. "We came in here knowing in our minds who the top four teams were and we wanted to beat one of them." Corbett's New York squad came into the competition ranked No. 8 while Wald's Minnesota 2 came in as the No. 3 seed. "We've played a lot of games this year already in Ontario and in the U.S. so we might be better prepared than last time we made it here," Corbett said of his team's seventh-place finish at the 2006 Junior Nationals. Monica Walker's Massachusetts team personified the word perseverance as they fought off the scrappy Utah team skipped by local curler Miranda Schieber (Portage, Wis.) for a 7-6 win. Trailing throughout the entire match, Massachusetts second Nikki Rossetti (Framingham, Mass.) got a stone buried behind a guard in the 10th end that Utah couldn't chip out, resulting in an extra end. Utah had control of the house in the 11th until Walker drew through a port to stick her stone partially on the four foot. Schieber's runback attempt didn't work out and Massachusetts, the No. 1 women's seed, walked off the ice with a look of relief. Brad Caldwell's Wisconsin team bounced back from last night's loss with an 11-7 win over Grant Rahn's Illinois team. Caldwell (Mapleton, Minn.) and teammates Matt Collom (Centerville, Wis.), Tyler Vietanen (Trempealeau, Wis.) and John Landsteiner (Mapleton, Wis.) only needed one point for the win after Illinois stole two in the ninth end to tie the game but put an exclamation point with a takeout to score four to secure the victory and improve to 1-1. Alexandra Carlson's Minnesota 1 team cruised past North Dakota's Amanda Tucker team, 7-2. Carlson (Inver Grove Heights, Minn.) and teammates Tara Peterson (Eagan, Minn.), Tabitha Peterson (Eagan, Minn.) and Sophie Brorson (Duluth, Minn.) improve to 2-0 with the win. The round robin continues through Friday morning followed by the Page System playoffs in the evening. The winning teams from the 2008 Junior Nationals will represent the U.S. at the 2008 World Junior Championships March 1-9 in Ostersund, Sweden. Game scores (women): Massachusetts 7, Utah 6; Minnesota I 7, North Dakota 2; Wisconsin 11, Illinois 4; New York 9, Minnesota II 7 Standings: Women: Massachusetts (Walker) 2-0 Minnesota 1 (Carlson) 2-0 Alaska (Hufman) 1-0 Minnesota 2 (Solem) 1-0 Wisconsin 1 (Spatola) 1-0 Illinois (Stewart) 0-1 Pennsylvania (Anderson) 0-1 Wisconsin 2 (Schaffer) 0-1 North Dakota (Tucker) 0-2 Utah (Schieber) 0-2 Men: Minnesota 1 (Plys) 2-0 New York (Corbett) 2-0 North Dakota (Jensen) 1-0 Minnesota 2 (Wald) 1-1 Massachusetts (Dropkin) 1-1 Washington (Thomas) 1-1 Wisconsin (Caldwell) 1-1 Michigan (Smith) 0-1 Illinois (Rahn) 0-2 Alaska (Birklid) 0-2 USA Curling is sponsored by AIT Worldwide Logistics, AmerAust Technologies and Nike as well as by AT,T, General Motors, The Home Depot, and Bank of America through a joint marketing program with the U.S. Olympic Committee. (30) For more information: Terry Kolesar, USA Curling,, 715-344-1199, Ext. 202, or 608-338-9900 (cell).