USA finishes fourth after Russia wins bronze medal with last rock

By Terry L. Davis | March 25, 2018, 1:58 p.m. (ET)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 25, 2018

 

USA women finish fourth at 2018 World Women’s Championship

 

(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – In their first appearance together at the 2018 World Women’s Curling Championship in North Bay, Ontario, Team USA’s Jamie Sinclair rink showed they came ready to show the world that they can contend for a medal.

 

Sinclair (St. Paul, Minn.) and teammates Alex Carlson (St. Paul, Minn.), Vicky Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska), and Monica Walker (St. Paul, Minn.) came thisclose to a spot on the podium after a last-rock loss to Russia’s Victoria Moiseeva in the bronze medal game today. The U.S. team was supported by alternate Jenna Martin (Wauwatosa, Wis.) and coaches Scott Baird (Bemidji, Minn.) and Derek Brown (Scotland).

 

“Our first goal was to qualify and we did that. Then we re-assessed from there and our second goal was definitely to bring home some hardware and we had the chance,” Sinclair said. “We came close, but it wasn’t meant to be today, but I’m just super proud of the team for coming this far, we’ve come a long way in two years.”

 

The playoff appearance was just the second for the U.S. women’s program in the last decade with the 2013 team and Sinclair’s rink finishing fourth.

 

We’ve learned a lot. This whole experience was a learning curve for us. We’ve never played in this kind of venue, this atmosphere, this stage, this level, so we’ve learned a lot and it’s going to help us grow and mature as a team,” Sinclair said.

 

It was a back-and-forth battle for the bronze medal today with multiple momentum swings in front of a nice crowd at the North Bay Memorial Gardens Arena.

 

The U.S. ladies had a good chance to force an extra end or steal the win but Russia made a draw for the win with the final stone to collect a medal for the fifth straight year.

 

“It’s incredible, I am so proud of my team,” Moiseeva said. “It was such a good game with ups and downs, some stones they made better than us and we made some good shots, too. I have no words to describe it. We fought so hard for that. It was a long week for us, but it was a great adventure and to finish it with a medal just feels so amazing.”

 

After the first end was blanked, a nice double takeout with Carlson’s second vice skip stone kept the U.S. in charge of the house in the second end. After an exchange of hits with the skip stones, Russia was forced to draw for a single but it drifted to the back of the four-foot as the Americans stole a point. In the third end, Russia countered by improving its draw weight with the final stone as they grabbed two points.

 

The U.S. was not able to set the deuce up in the fourth end and then got forced into taking a point in the fifth when they made a move to go for the deuce that didn’t pan out. The U.S. would steal a point in the sixth end when Moiseeva’s final draw attempt was short after Sinclair had played a nice freeze with her final stone to grab scoring position.

 

When the seventh end was blanked, the Americans would keep a stone in the top of the four-foot and protected through much of the eighth end. The U.S. then tried to use Sinclair’s first skip stone to draw behind a Russian corner guard and place a second stone in the rings but the stone was heavy. This allowed Russia to finally get at that U.S. shot rock, which then left Russia with potentially three stones in scoring position. With Sinclair’s final rock of the end, the U.S. was hoping to get a roll after the takeout but it ended up as a hit and stay. Russia removed the U.S. stone with ease to take a one-point lead.

 

In the ninth end, the U.S. team placed Carlson’s second stone unto the button behind a Russian center guard. Russia’s tap attempt left them in second position so Sinclair used her first skip stone to guard it. Moiseeva, hoping to force the U.S. to a single, drew down to the side of the four-foot but the other side was available for the Americans to draw into for two points as they put themselves into a good position to potentially win.

 

The U.S. placed Walker’s second stone of the final end in the top of the four-foot but Russia was able to freeze to the top of it and potentially set up a deuce. The U.S. then used Persinger’s stones for additional guards but both slipped a little deeper than the intended high guard positions. Russia was able to successfully convert the double peel. Russia then got around Carlson’s high guard to move back the U.S. shot to the back of the eight foot and finally grab shot rock. Carlson’s draw attempt needed to curl a few more inches to get it buried behind the center guard in the four foot. Russia was able to go after it to give Sinclair a potential hit and roll to bury the American stone. Her attempt, however, was over-swept and left it easier for Russia to remove. Russia’s takeout attempt then rolled out after removing the U.S. stone and the Americans had another chance to put Russia under pressure. Sinclair’s draw attempt around the guard was heavy and slid into second position to give Russia the draw for the win.

 

“The tenth end didn’t go our way – we were going for the forced steal, hoping to clog up that centerline a bit,” Sinclair said.

 

The gold-medal game between Canada and Sweden will be featured live on NBCSN at 3 p.m. ET today.

To learn more about the event, go to http://www.worldcurling.org/wwcc2018.

 

Line score:

*Russia               002 000 020 2 – 6

USA                     010 011 002 0 – 5

*last stone in first end (hammer)

 

Playoff results:

Qualification games: USA 10, KOR 3; Russia 7, Czech Republic 3

Semifinal #1: Sweden 7, Russia 6

Semifinal #2: Canada 9, USA 7

Bronze-medal game: Russia 6, USA 5

3 p.m. ET today, gold-medal game (Sweden vs. Canada)

 

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.

 

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