Eighteen teams to compete at 2018 National Championships in Fargo

By Terry L. Davis | Jan. 07, 2018, 9:55 p.m. (ET)


Jan. 7, 2018


Fargo to host 18 teams at 2018 National Championships


(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – A field of eight women’s and 10 men’s teams will compete in the 2018 USA Curling National Championships March 3-10 at Scheels Arena in Fargo, N.D.


Nine teams qualified via Order of Merit points earned through early December while seven teams secured spots this weekend at the Men’s and Women’s Challenge Rounds.


Earning the first two spots on Saturday afternoon were teams skipped by Alex Leichter (Boston) and Jed Brudidge (West St. Paul, Minn.) out of the Men’s Challenge Round taking place at the Capital Curling Club in Bismarck, N.D. Out of the B qualifier on Saturday night, Kroy Nernberger (Madison, Wis.) led his team to a spot in Fargo as well. That left one spot remaining today and three teams left in contention. Tucker Smith’s rink knocked out Andrew Stopera’s team, 7-6, this morning to move to the C qualifier final against Scott Dunnam’s team. A fast start for Dunnam (Dresher, Pa.) and his team of Cody Clouser (Berwyn, Pa.), Trevor Host (St. Paul, Minn.), and Ethan Meyers (Minneapolis, Minn.) resulted in a 10-8 win over Smith to earn the final spot to the Nationals from the Men’s Challenge Round.


Five teams were competing for three spots at the Women’s Challenge Round at the Four Seasons Curling Club where rinks skipped by Ann Podoll (Fargo, N.D.), Madison Bear (Pardeeville, Wis.) and Christine McMakin (St. Paul, Minn.) secured berths to the Women’s National Championship on Saturday afternoon as the round robin wrapped up.


The final two berths will be determined via a discretionary selection to bring the field to 10 men’s and eight women’s teams. The Nationals are a key competition in determining the U.S. entrants for the 2018 World Women’s and World Men’s Championships this spring.


Fargo, which hosted the 2011 National Championships and 2014 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Curling, will stage the weeklong event at Scheels Arena – a 5,000-seat hockey arena located in southwest Fargo and is home to the USHL hockey team the Fargo Force, Fargo high school hockey and many other special events. USA Curling and Scheels Arena will partner with the Fargo-Moorhead Curling Club and Fargo-Moorhead Convention and Visitors Bureau in hosting the event.


Here is a look at the teams qualified to compete for this year’s national titles:


Teams qualified to the 2018 National Championships:

Men: 10-team field

Team Birr: Todd Birr (Ham Lake, Minn.), John Benton (Blaine, Minn.), Hunter Clawson (Clarksville, Md.), Tom O’Connor (Brooklyn Center, Minn.)

Team Fenson: Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.), Shawn Rojeski (Chisholm, Minn.), Mark Fenner (Bemidji, Minn.), Alex Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.)

Team McCormick: Heath McCormick (Sarnia, Ontario), Chris Plys (Duluth, Minn.), Korey Dropkin (Duluth, Minn.), Tom Howell (Milwaukee, Wis.)

Team Persinger: Greg Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska), Rich Ruohonen (Brooklyn Park, Minn.), Colin Hufman (St. Paul, Minn.), Phil Tilker (Seattle)

Team Shuster: John Shuster (Superior, Wis.), Tyler George (Duluth, Minn.), Matt Hamilton (McFarland, Wis.), John Landsteiner (Duluth, Minn.), Joe Polo (Duluth, Minn.)

Team Brundidge: Jed Brundidge (West St. Paul, Minn.), Jordan Brown (Elk River, Minn.), Evan Workin (Fargo, N.D.), Cameron Rittenour (Sioux Falls, S.D.)

Team Leichter: Alex Leichter (Boston), Martin Sather (Yonkers, N.Y.), Chris Bond (Seattle), Jared Wydysh (Fairport, N.Y.)

Team Nernberger: Kroy Nernberger (Madison, Wis.), Sean Beighton (Seattle), Derrick McLean (Bothell, Wash.), Quinn Evenson (Duluth, Minn.)

Team Dunnam: Scott Dunnam (Dresher, Pa.), Cody Clouser (Berwyn, Pa.), Trevor Host (St. Paul, Minn.), Ethan Meyers (Minneapolis, Minn.)

Team No. 10 to be announced

Women: 8-team field

Team E. Anderson: Emily Anderson (Broomall, Pa.), Sherri Schummer (St. Paul, Minn.), Katie Dubberstein (Portage, Wis.), Libby Brundage (Prospect Harbor, Maine)

Team S. Anderson: Sarah Anderson (Minneapolis, Minn.), Taylor Anderson (Minneapolis, Minn.), Natalie Nicholson (Bemidji, Minn.), Jenna Martin (Wauwatosa, Wis.), Cory Christensen (Duluth, Minn.)

Team Rhyme: Kim Rhyme (Minneapolis, Minn.), Rebecca Andrew (West Henrietta, N.Y.), Katie Rhyme (Brown Deer, Wis.), Amy Harnden (Blaine, Minn.)

Team Sinclair: Jamie Sinclair (St. Paul, Minn.), Alex Carlson (St. Paul, Minn.), Vicky Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska), Monica Walker (St. Paul, Minn.)

Team Bear: Madison Bear (Pardeeville, Wis.), Annmarie Dubberstein (Portage, Wis.), Jenna Burchesky (Walpole, Mass.), Allison Howell (Solon, Ohio)

Team McMakin: Christine McMakin (St. Paul, Minn.), Suzanna Viau (Plover, Wis.), Anna Netteberg (Roseville, Minn.), Mairin Barrett (Woodbury, Minn.)

Team Podoll: Ann Podoll (Fargo, N.D.), Carissa Thomas (Moorhead, Minn.), Rachel Workin (Fargo, N.D.), Christina Lammers (Reiles Acres, N.D.)

Team No. 8 to be announced

USA Curling is sponsored by AtomOS, Nike, Brooms Up Curling Supplies, Cheetos, CryoMAX 8-Hour Cold Pack, Sitrin, The RAM Restaurant & Brewery, Thorne, BalancePlus, ISS (Ice, Sports & Solar), and Brakebush, and is partnered with Laurie Artiss Ltd. – The Pin People, United Airlines, 12th End Sports Network, and CurlingZone.


For more information: Terry Davis, Director of Communications, terry.davis@usacurl.org, 608-338-9900 (mobile) or 715-344-1199, Ext. 202 (office).