FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Feb. 19, 2019
American men move into second place at 2019 World Juniors
(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – Andrew Stopera and the American men took a big jump up the round robin standings with a solid win over Norway today at the 2019 World Junior Championships.
Stopera (Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.) and his team of Luc Violette (Edmonds, Wash.), Ben Richardson (Cleveland, Ohio) and Graem Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.) outshot Magnus Ramsfjell’s team to earn a 9-5 victory at Queens Place Emera Centre.
The win moves the U.S. men (3-2) into a five-way tie for second place behind Scotland (5-0).
“We had come out playing well and got this big win,” said Stopera, who outshot his opposing skip 85 to 69 percent. “We just kept our game plan, stayed focused and kept up the communication with the team. The ice in Liverpool is good and everyone is doing a good job up there. We are happy with how it's been and feel really good.”
The U.S. started the match strong as they drew into the four-foot to score three points and control the match. Norway answered with a shot for two points in the third end only to have the U.S. draw into the four-foot once again for three points in the fourth. The U.S. men would steal a point in the fifth to take a 7-2 lead at the halfway point.
Norway’s play improved in the second half and they tested the U.S. team for the next five ends. The U.S. was in danger of giving up a big end in the sixth but two great stones late in the end only gave up two points to the Norwegians.
Stopera would allow a single steal in the seventh end as he placed his final skip stone in the four-foot to avoid a tougher shot that might have given up multiple points. Stopera would then bail out the team in the eighth end with a great double takeout to score a single. Norway continued to pressure the U.S. and had them on their heels in the ninth but missed the final takeout as the U.S. stole a point.
“We’re doing well. We’ve had a couple of losses which isn’t fantastic, but we’re happy to bounce back,” Fenson said. “So, we feel we’re back in our ways now and the experience helps. We were disappointed last year to miss out on medals so we’re looking for medals.”
Next up for the U.S. men will be matches against Sweden (1-4) and New Zealand (3-2) on Wednesday. All results will be posted at www.worldcurling.org/wjcc2019.
Team USA’s Cait Flannery (Mankato, Minn.) and her team of Leah Yavarow (Bemidji, Minn.), Lexi Lanigan (Duluth, Minn.) and Rebecca Miles (Duluth, Minn.) are set to take the ice tonight against Scotland (1-3).
Norway 002 002 100 x – 5
*USA men 030 310 011 x – 9
*last stone in first end
New Zealand 3-2
Here is a look at the competition schedule for the American teams (all times local, Atlantic Time Zone):
Wednesday: 9 a.m., USA men vs. Sweden (Daniel Berggren); 2 p.m., USA women vs. China (Yu Han); 7 p.m., USA men vs. New Zealand (Matthew Neilson)
Thursday: 9 a.m., USA women vs. Sweden (Tova Sundberg); 2 p.m., USA men vs. Switzerland (Marco Hoesli); 7 p.m., USA women vs. Switzerland (Raphaela Keiser)
Friday: 9 a.m., USA men vs. Scotland (Ross Whyte); 2 p.m., USA women vs. Norway (Maia Ramsfjell)
Friday: 7:30 p.m., men’s and women’s semifinals
Saturday: 10 a.m., men’s gold- and bronze-medal games
Saturday: 3 p.m., women’s gold- and bronze-medal games
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For more information: Terry Davis, Director of Communications, firstname.lastname@example.org, 608-338-9900 (mobile).