CURLING: Field announced for 2008 USA Curling National Championships in Hibbing

Jan. 28, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE January 28, 2008 Field set for 2008 Nationals in Hibbing, Minn. (STEVENS POINT, Wis.) - The field of competing teams is now set for the 2008 USA Curling National Championships in Hibbing, Minn., on Feb. 16-23. Teams skipped by 2006 Olympian John Shuster (Chisholm, Minn.), Jeremy Roe (Rio, Wis.), Tyler George (Duluth, Minn.) and 2001 national champion Greg Romaniuk (Snohomish, Wash.) earned the final four men's spots Sunday at the conclusion of the Challenge Round in Eau Claire, Wis. The Shuster and George rinks finished with 5-1 records followed by Roe's team at 4-3. Four teams ended up tied with 3-4 records so tiebreakers were needed to determine the final Nationals entrant. In the first tiebreaker, Eric Fenson's Bemidji, Minn., team defeated Bryan Wight's New York squad, 6-1, while Romaniuk's team slid past Kent Beadle's Twin Cities team, 8-2. Romaniuk then got the better of Fenson's team for the second time in this competition by a score of 9-3 to qualify for Nationals. A total of 10 men's and seven women's teams will compete at the 2008 U.S. Nationals. The winning teams will represent the U.S. at the subsequent world championships. The Women's World Championship will take place March 22-30 in Vernon, British Columbia, while the Men's World Championship is set for April 5-13 in Grand Forks, N.D., at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Hibbing, a northern Minnesota community of about 17,000 residents is the hometown of legendary musician Bob Dylan as well as Boston Celtic great Kevin McHale. The seven-sheet curling club is located in the Memorial Building at 400 East 23rd St. The club last hosted the National Championships in 1984 and is the home to many of the sport's legendary curlers including the 1976 world champion rink skipped by Bruce Roberts as well as the sport's first men's national champions from 1957 - Harold Lauber team. Here is a look at the competing field for the 2008 U.S. National Championships: Team Birr (defending national champions): Todd Birr (Mankato, Minn.), Bill Todhunter (Appleton, Wis.), Greg Johnson (Appleton, Wis.), Kevin Birr (St. Peter, Minn.), Paul Pustovar (Hibbing, Minn.) Team Brown: Craig Brown (Madison, Wis.), Rich Ruohonen (Brooklyn Park, Minn.), John Dunlop (Milwaukee, Wis.), Pete Annis (Owatonna, Minn.) Team Disher: Craig Disher (Rolla, N.D.), Kevin Kakela (Rolla, N.D.), Zach Jacobson (Langdon, N.D.), Carey Kakela (St. John, N.D.), Kurt Disher (Hansboro, N.D.), Coach Joel Jacobson (Langdon, N.D.) Team Fenson: Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.), Shawn Rojeski (Chisholm, Minn.), Joe Polo (Bemidji, Minn.), Tom O'Connor (Golden Valley, Minn.), Coach Bob Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.) Team George: Tyler George (Duluth, Minn.), Kris Perkovich (Chisholm, Minn.), Phill Drobnick (Duluth, Minn.), Kevin Johnson (Winabego, Minn.), Coach Tom George (Duluth, Minn.) Team Larway: Jason Larway (Lynnwood, Wash.), Colin Hufman (Seattle), Greg Persinger (Anchorage, Alaska), Joel Larway (Lynnwood, Wash.), Steven Demlow (Bothell, Wash.) Team Roe: Jeremy Roe (Rio, Wis.), Pat Roe (Madison, Wis.), Richard Maskel (Green Bay, Wis.), Mark Hartman (Sun Prairie, Wis.), Matt Hamilton (McFarland, Wis.) Team Romaniuk: Greg Romaniuk (Snohomish, Wash.), Leon Romaniuk (Kirkland, Wash.), Doug Pottinger (Eden Prairie, Minn.), Mike Calcagno (Kirkland, Wash.), Cory Yalowicki (Bothell, Wash.) Team Shuster: John Shuster (Duluth, Minn.), Jeff Isaacson (Gilbert, Minn.), Chris Plys (Duluth, Minn.), Shane McKinlay (Fridley, Minn.), Jason Smith (Cape Coral, Fla.), Coach Tim Wright (Duluth, Minn.) Team Wilberg: William Wilberg (Green Bay, Wis.), Charles Taggart (Green Bay, Wis.), Alex Leichter (Wayland, Mass.), Andrew Quigley (Green Bay, Wis.), Andy Campbell (Green Bay, Wis.), Coach Bill Wilberg (Green Bay, Wis.) Women's field: Team Gervais: Gillian Gervais (Winnipeg, Manitoba), Stephanie Roland (East Grand Forks, Minn.), Stephanie Jensen (Bismarck, N.D.), Sarah Felchle (Bismarck, N.D.), Coach Dave Jensen (Bismarck, N.D.) Team Lank: Patti Lank (Lewiston, N.Y.), Caitlin Maroldo (Rochester, N.Y.), Chrissy Haase (Schenectady, N.Y.), Ann Swisshelm Silver (Chicago), Erika Brown (Oakville, Ontario), Coach Steve Brown (Madison, Wis.) Team Lin: Charrissa Lin (New Haven, Conn.), Janice Langanke (Middletown, N.J.), Nicole Arseneault (Brick, N.J.), Rachel Sethi (Falls Church, Va.), Coach Sandra McMakin (Potomac, Md.) Team McCormick: Debbie McCormick (Rio, Wis.), Allison Pottinger (Eden Prairie, Minn.), Nicole Joraanstad (Madison, Wis.), Natalie Nicholson (Bemidji, Minn.), Coach Wally Henry (Beaver Dam, Wis.) Team Potter: Cassie (Johnson) Potter (Minneapolis), Jamie Haskell (Bemidji, Minn.), Jessica Schultz (Duluth, Minn.), Maureen Brunt (Minneapolis.), Jackie Lemke (Medford, Wis.), Coach Jim Dexter (St. Paul) Team Sormunen: Aileen Sormunen (Duluth, Minn.), Courtney George (Duluth, Minn.), Molly Bonner (Virginia, Minn.), Jordan Moulton (Highland Park, Ill.), Coach Bob Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.) Team Stuhlman: Anne Stuhlman (New Hartford, N.Y.), Diane Higgins (Richfield Springs, N.Y.), Lisa Mitchell (Lancaster, Mass.), Karen Rogowski (New York Mills, N.Y.), Coach Sandra McMakin (Potomac, Md.) 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).