CURLING: Minnesota and Wisconsin share lead at Club Nationals

March 06, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 5, 2008 Minnesota and Wisconsin share lead at Club Nationals (STEVENS POINT, Wis.)-Minnesota and Wisconsin 1 share the lead with 6-1 records at the U.S. Club Nationals in Mankato, Minn. Wisconsin 1, curling out of the Madison Curling Club, had Richard Maskel holding the broom and Dave Brown throwing last rocks as they beat Illinois 9-1, bumping Jeff Wright's Exmoor men into a tie for third place with North Dakota. Maskel noted that Wisconsin had made a line-up change, adding Wally Henry as fifth player to sub for Kraig Deeren, who had to leave for school exams."Our line-up has been changing regularly for one reason or another, but we are playing well."Wright remained confident."We had an off game. Now, we need to win one of our next two games to reach the semis. We can do it."Minnesota, representing the St. Paul Curling Club, kept their co-lead by crushing the first-year curlers, out of Colorado's Broadmoor Curling Club, 13-3. Minnesota skip Reuben Harris, a transplanted Canadian, led his team of Matthew Peterson, Aaron Nunberg, Zac Owens and Lionel Locke over the Colorado Springs foursome, skipped by Brett Gleeson, who are big on enthusiasm and effort if short on experience. Maryland beat Ohio 8-7 with a steal of one in an extra end. In the regulation 10th end, skips Stuart Cohen and Scott Edie traded great shots. After Cohen drew the full four foot behinf cover, Edie used the other turn to execute a three foot raise of his rock to outcount Cohen's stone, sending the game into overtime. In the extra end, Ohio was unable to convert its last rock advantage. With the win, Maryland's Potomac Curling Club rink keeps its playoff hopes alive, one game out of fourth place. North Dakota stayed in semi-final contention by beating Oregon 9-5, in 9 ends. The Williston Basin Curling Club entry, skipped by Rick Tangedal, reversed an early 3-2 deficit by scoring six unanswered points in mid-game to seal the victory over Doug Schaak's Evergreen Curling Club rink. Washington beat Wisconsin 2 8-5, stealing two in the 10th when Wisconsin's last shot take out attempt over-curled. Skip Ian Journeaux's Poynette Curling Club representatives had started strong with four points in the first end, but Washington, skipped by Doug Kauffman of the Seattle Granite Curling Club, persevered for the win. Round robin action continues Thursday through Friday afternoon. The top four teams qualify for Saturday morning's semifinals. The men's and women's championship finals are set for 2 p.m. Saturday. The U.S. Club Nationals, now in its fourth year, does not lead to the World Championships, rather rewards the top league-playing team in the U.S. The winners of the recent U.S. National Championships in Hibbing represent the U.S. at the Worlds. Standings: Men: Minnesota (Harris) 6-1 Wisconsin 1 (Brown) 6-1 Illinois (Wright) 5-2 North Dakota (Tangedal) 5-2 Maryland (Edie) 4-3 Oregon (Schaak) 3-4 Washington (Rasmussen) 3-4 Ohio (Cohen) 2-5 Wisconsin 2 (Journeaux) 1-6 Colorado (Gleeson) 0-7 Women: Minnesota (O'Leary) 6-0 Wisconsin (Pahl) 5-1 Illinois (Lawless) 4-2 Maryland (Drummie) 4-2 New York (Meechai) 3-3 North Dakota 1 (Bohlman)3-3 North Dakota 2 (Jaster) 2-4 Arizona (Tait) 1-5 Ohio (Festersen) 1-5 Texas (Willingham) 1-5 USA Curling is sponsored by AIT Worldwide Logistics, AmerAust Technologies and Nike as well as by AT,T 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).