USA aiming for gold in Sochi as 2014 Paralympic Winter Games begin Saturday

By Terry Kolesar | March 06, 2014, 12 a.m. (ET)
March 6, 2014

Team USA aiming for medal at 2014 Paralympic Winter Games

(SOCHI, RUSSIA) - Two-time Paralympian and U.S. Army veteran Patrick McDonald (Madison, Wis.) will lead Team USA's wheelchair curling team at the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

The round robin gets underway Saturday at the Ice Cube Curling Center. McDonald and his team of David Palmer (Mashpee, Mass.), Jimmy Joseph (New Hartford, N.Y.), Penny Greely (Green Bay, Wis.), and Meghan Lino (East Falmouth, Mass.) are seeking USA's first-ever Paralympic medal in wheelchair curling. The team is coached by Steve Brown (Madison, Wis.) and Rusty Schieber (Portage, Wis.).

The U.S. will face Slovakia at 9:30 a.m. (MSK) Saturday to start off the nine-game round robin. They will also compete against Canada, China, Finland, Great Britain, Korea, Norway, Russia, and Sweden. After the conclusion of the round robin, the top four teams will advance to the semifinals on March 15. 

Team USA finished fourth at last year's world wheelchair event in Sochi, Russia, and is currently ranked sixth in the world. Wheelchair curling was added as a Paralympic medal sport in 2006. This will be the third straight Paralympic Games appearance for Joseph, 51, and second for McDonald, 46. Greely, 42, was a member of the bronze-medal winning sitting volleyball team at the 2004 Paralympic Summer Games in Athens, Greece. This will be the first Paralympic Games for both Palmer, 53, and Lino, 29. 

Canada has won gold at the past two Paralympic Games. 

NBC and NBC Sports Network will combine to air 50 hours of television coverage for March's Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, starting on with the Opening Ceremony on Friday night. 2006 Olympic bronze medalist Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.) is part of the on-air team for NBC's coverage of the wheelchair curling competition. In addition to the unprecedented U.S. television coverage, the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) will provide live online coverage of all events at  Learn more about NBC's coverage here,

Here is a look at Team USA's round robin schedule:
Saturday, March 8: USA v. Slovakia, 9:30; USA v. Korea, 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 9: USA v. Norway, 9:30 a.m.
Monday, March 10: USA v. Canada, 9:30 a.m.; USA v. Russia, 3:30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 11: USA v. Finland, 3:30 p.m.
Wednesday, March 12: USA v. China, 9:30 a.m.; USA v. Sweden, 3:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 13: USA v. Great Britain, 9:30 a.m.
Friday, March 14: Tiebreaker games, if needed
Saturday, March 15: Semifinals, 9:30 a.m.; gold- and bronze-medal games, 3:30 p.m.

USA Curling is sponsored by AtomAmpd, Nike, Brooms Up Curling Supplies, Sitrin, and The RAM Restaurant & Brewery, BalancePlus, and is partnered with Hilton, United Airlines, RJM Licensing Inc., and CurlingZone.


For more information: Terry Kolesar, press officer, Team USA,, +1-719-207-5083 (RUS mobile) or 608-338-9900 (U.S. mobile).