USA defeats Sweden to head to semifinal at 2009 World Juniors

March 16, 2009, 10:54 a.m. (ET)
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (March 14, 2009) - USA's Chris Plys team continued its winning ways with a 7-5 defeat of Sweden this afternoon to head to the semifinals at the 2009 World Junior Championships at the Vancouver Olympic Centre.

Plys (Duluth, Minn.) and teammates Aanders Brorson (Duluth), Matt Perushek (Eveleth, Minn.) and Matt Hamilton (McFarland, Wis.) lost earlier in the round robin to Oskar Erikkson's rink but took control of today's game and held off last year's runner-up. The Swedes earned a deuce to start the game but the Americans tied the game after the third end. A deuce in the fifth would give the U.S. the lead until the seventh end when the Swedish team scored two and tied the game. The reigning world junior champions would score two in the final end to stay alive in the quest to defend their title.

"It was a good game. It was the exact same score as when we beat them last year in the finals of worlds," Plys said. "The whole team played well and set up me up well. It made my job pretty easy."

The Americans will now face Denmark in tonight's semifinal at 7 p.m. PT. Denmark lost the Page 1-2 game to Canada, 11-5. Canada advances directly to Sunday's gold-medal game.

"They beat us in the round robin, but we played pretty flat," Plys said about tonight's match-up. "We will be playing for redemption, and this is a little bit of a grudge match. We have to keep playing well and see what happens."

Line score:

USA 011 020 010 2 7
Sweden* 200 100 020 0 5
*last stone in first end

USA Curling is sponsored by Kodiak Technology Group, AIT Worldwide Logistics and Nike.