Sinclair rink lone undefeated team at 2018 Nationals

By Terry L. Davis | March 07, 2018, 6:59 a.m. (ET)


March 7, 2018


Sinclair rink alone at the top of women’s standings at 2018 National Championships


(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – And then there was one. Jamie Sinclair’s defending champions are alone at the top of the women’s standings and the lone undefeated team in the field at the 2018 USA Curling National Championships at Scheels Arena in Fargo, N.D.


Sinclair (St. Paul, Minn.) and teammates Alex Carlson (St. Paul, Minn.), Vicky Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska), and Monica Walker (St. Paul, Minn.) defeated Beth Podoll’s Fargo rink, 7-4, to improve to 5-0 in the seven-game women’s round robin.


“We’re making some shots out there, getting a hold of the ice and mapping out each sheet,” Persinger said. “We had a tight one tonight for a little while but hung in there. We got some breaks in the later ends and came out with a win.” 


Cora Farrell’s junior team improved to 3-2 by handing Cory Christensen’s team its first loss of the championship by a 7-3 score. Farrell (Fairbanks, Alaska) and her team of Cait Flannery (Mankato, Minn.), Lexi Lanigan (Duluth, Minn.), and Rebecca Miles (Duluth, Minn.) are currently in third place.


“It feels great. We came back after a tough loss against Team Rhyme and didn’t play our best then. But we came back strong and tried to have fun honestly. We’re here for experience and it was good to have fun,” Lanigan said.


Christine McMakin (St. Paul, Minn.) led her team to a 6-4 triumph over Emily Anderson’s rink to improve to 2-3 as the young team hopes to make a playoff appearance.


“I think all of us played well and we did a good job of taking advantage of misses,” said Suzanna Viau, vice skip for Team McMakin. “When another teammate would miss, we’d come behind each other and make our next shot. I think we were really able to come together as a team and overall make more of our shots than we did this morning.”


Kim Rhyme’s team also improved to 2-3 with a 7-6 win over Ann Podoll’s team from Fargo.


“We had a team meeting last night that kind of shifted the energy within each other,” said Katie Rhyme, second for Team Rhyme. “We really came out ready to play today, focused and we controlled our game so it was good.”


In the men’s night draw, Heath McCormick and Greg Persinger both led their teams to victories to remain tied for first place at 6-1. McCormick (Sarnia, Ontario) and his team of Chris Plys (Duluth, Minn.), Korey Dropkin (Duluth, Minn.), and Tom Howell (Milwaukee, Wis.) slid past Jed Brundidge’s team, 10-3. Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska) and teammates Rich Ruohonen (Brooklyn Park, Minn.), Colin Hufman (St. Paul, Minn.), and Phil Tilker (Seattle) stole the 10th end to defeat Kroy Nernberger’s team, 5-4. Todd Birr’s team kept its playoff hopes alive with an 8-4 victory over Tucker Smith’s Bismarck rink. Nick Connolly’s junior team improved to 3-4 with a 6-4 win over Alex Leichter’s rink. Eight-time national champion Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.) led his team to a 10-4 victory over Scott Dunnam’s team to improve to 4-3 in the nine-game round robin.


The round robin action continues through tonight with the top four teams advancing to the Page playoffs.


A live webstream, produced by the 12th End Sports Network in partnership with USA Curling and the U.S. Olympic Committee, and live scores are posted at


Men’s standings:

Heath McCormick (Sarnia, Ontario)         6-1

Greg Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska)           6-1

Todd Birr (Ham Lake, Minn.)                     4-3

Jed Brundidge (West St. Paul, Minn.)      4-3

Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.)                    4-3

Alex Leichter (Boston)                                3-4

Kroy Nernberger (Madison, Wis.)            3-4

Nick Connolly (Seattle)                               3-4

Scott Dunnam (Dresher, Pa.)                     1-6

Tucker Smith (Bismarck, N.D.)                   1-6


Women’s standings:

Jamie Sinclair (St. Paul, Minn.)                  5-0

Cory Christensen (Duluth, Minn.)             4-1

Cora Farrell (Fairbanks, Alaska)                3-2

Christine McMakin (St. Paul, Minn.)        2-3

Beth Podoll (Fargo, N.D.)                           2-3

Kim Rhyme (Minneapolis, Minn.)             2-3

Emily Anderson (Broomall, Pa.)                1-4

Ann Podoll (Fargo, N.D.)                             1-4


What’s at stake:

The weeklong national event features the top men’s and women’s teams in the country and helps determine Team USA for the subsequent World Championships. The 2018 World Men’s Championship will take place March 31-April 8 in Las Vegas, Nev., while the 2018 World Women’s Championship will be staged March 17-25 in North Bay, Ontario.


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,, 608-338-9900 (mobile) or 715-344-1199, Ext. 202 (office).