CURLING: Five U.S. teams to participate in U-18 Curling Championships

March 26, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 26, 2008 Five U.S. teams to compete at U-18 Optimist International in Winnipeg (STEVENS POINT, Wis.) - Five U.S. teams will compete at the 2008 Optimist International Under 18 Curling Championships April 3-6 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Teams skipped by Aaron Wald (Chisholm, Minn.), Sophie Brorson (Duluth, Minn.), Alex Leichter (Wayland, Mass.), Sam Galey (Seattle) and Taylor Lawless (Hawthorn Woods, Ill.) will begin play on Thursday at the Pembina Curling Club. U.S. teams had to apply to the USCA Coaching Committee for the five available spots to participate at this competitive event held annually by the Optimist Clubs of Winnipeg Foundation. Live scoring, schedule, team photos and additional event information from the 2008 Optimist International U-18 Championships can be found at Here is a look at the competing teams: Minnesota: Sophie Brorson (Duluth, Minn.), Tara Peterson (Eagan, Minn.), Anna Plys (Duluth, Minn.), Lauren Bjerke (St. Paul, Minn.), Coach John Benton (St. Michael, Minn.), Coach Howard Restall (Winnipeg) Wisconsin: Taylor Lawless (Hawthorn Woods, Ill.), Jenna Kaschinske (Hartland, Wis.), Becca Funk (McFarland, Wis.), Alyssa Kaschinske (Hartland, Wis.), Coach Wally Henry (Beaver Dam, Wis.) Massachusetts: Alex Leichter (Wayland, Mass.), Stephen Dropkin (Southborough, Mass.), Jared Wydysh (Wayland), Will Cousins (Medfield, Mass.), Coach Grayland Cousins (Medfield, Mass.) Washington: Sam Galey, Nick Pleasants, Derrick Pawlowski, Joe Mabbatt, Coach Jim Pleasants (all of Seattle) Minnesota: Aaron Wald (Chisholm, Minn.), Josh Bahr (Bemidji, Minn.), Jared Zezel (Hibbing, Minn.), John Muller (Hibbing, Minn.) and Coach Tim Muller (Hibbing, Minn.) (30) For more information: Terry Kolesar, USA Curling, 715-344-1199, Ext. 202 (office), 608-338-9900 (cell),