CURLING: Arizona wins fifth straight at 2008 U.S. Mixed Championship

March 18, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 18, 2008 Arizona wins fifth straight at 2008 U.S. Mixed Championship (DETROIT) - Fred Maxie's Arizona team won its fifth straight game Tuesday afternoon and took hold of first place at the 2008 U.S. Mixed National Championship at the Detroit Curling Club in Ferndale, Mich. Maxie (Phoenix) and teammates Cindy Kortebein (Knoxville, Tenn.), Richard Maskel (Green Bay, Wis.) and 2001 U.S. mixed champion Jan Legacie (Edmore, N.D.) dealt North Dakota 2's Duane Symons team its first loss of the competition, 10-7. North Dakota stole four points to open the game only to have Arizona counter with four as well. The difference-maker in the game was that Arizona scored deuces with the hammer while North Dakota only managed singles. Connecticut's Derek Surka rink got back on the winning track with an 8-2 defeat of the defending champions from Washington led by Brady Clark. Surka (New Haven, Conn.) and teammates Charrissa Lin (New Haven, Conn.), Sean Murray (Edgewood, Md.) and Rachel Sethi (Falls Church, Va.) jumped out to a 3-0 lead and never trailed as Clark's team would only score two points for the remainder of the match. Washington falls to 1-4 in the standings while Connecticut keeps pace with the Arizona and North Dakota 2 in the playoff race. Alaska's Dennis Thies rink won its first match of the competition but it came at the expense of the hometown team, 9-8. Thies and his Fairbanks, Alaska, teammates Susan Carothers, John Blake and Anne Burns fell behind to Michigan's David Loan team in the first half, 5-1, but came back roaring with five points in the sixth end. After exchanging deuces, Alaska was able to retain the last rock in the 10th end to score one for the win. North Dakota 1's Jerod Roland team improved to 3-2 after sliding past Illinois, 11-6. Roland's team had a five-ender as well in the fourth end to take a 6-3 lead over Doug Boyd's rink. A steal of three in the ninth end was enough to hand Illinois its fourth loss. The round robin continues at 7 tonight and concludes Thursday night. The semifinals are set for 4 p.m. Friday. The bronze-medal game is planned at 10 a.m. Saturday followed by the gold-medal game at 1 p.m. Game scores: Arizona 10, North Dakota II 7; North Dakota I 11, Illinois 6; Connecticut 8, Washington 2; Alaska 9, Michigan 8 Standings: Arizona 5-1 Connecticut 4-1 North Dakota 2 4-1 Minnesota 3-2 North Dakota 1 3-2 Wisconsin 2-2 Illinois 2-4 Alaska 1-4 Washington 1-4 Michigan 1-5 USA Curling is sponsored by AIT Worldwide Logistics, AmerAust Technologies and Nike. (30) For more information: Terry Kolesar, USA Curling,, 715-344-1199, Ext. 202, or 608-338-9900 (cell).