FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 3, 2019
Christensen and Shuster win 2019 Mixed Doubles National Championship
(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – Four-time Olympian John Shuster’s curling résumé just keeps getting longer. Fresh off of winning his seventh men’s national title three weeks ago, Shuster (Superior, Wis.) and teammate Cory Christensen (Duluth, Minn.) captured the 2019 USA Curling Mixed Doubles National Championship title with a 7-5 win over Vicky Persinger (Fairbanks, Alaska) and Chris Plys (Duluth, Minn.) this afternoon at the Granite Curling Club in Seattle.
The duo will now represent the United States at the 2019 World Mixed Doubles Championship April 20-27 in Stavanger, Norway. Shuster’s team also will compete in the World Men’s Championship later this month in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.
Christensen, a four-time junior national champion, and Shuster played a solid game and kept the pressure on Persinger, 26, and Plys, 30, in the eighth end. Two great taps from both Shuster and then Christensen to ensure they had shot rock left Persinger and Plys with little chance to win the game. With just one second left on their time clock, Persinger rushed the final takeout attempt but it was off target out of hand. With the winning point already in place, Christensen and Shuster’s national title was secured.
The back-and-forth match saw the lead change multiple times. Persinger and Plys, who won the men’s national title with Shuster last month in Kalamazoo, Mich., had a shot for three but settled for two after a takeout. A few missed shots by Persinger and Plys in the second end set up a draw for three for Christensen and Shuster to take the lead. Persinger and Plys missed a runback attempt for two points to spot Christensen and Shuster a single point in the third end. They would answer back with a takeout to score two points in the fourth to tie the game at the halfway mark. Heading into the second half, the game’s momentum continued in favor of Persinger and Plys as they stole a point to take the lead for the first time since the opening end.
In the sixth, Christensen, a student at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, and Shuster, a self-employed public speaker, had a chance for two points but ended up just getting one as the game was tied once again. The Duluth Curling Club duo would steal singles in the next two ends as they out-shot their opponents for the national mixed doubles title win.
Christensen, 24, and Shuster, 36, were runners-up at the 2018 Olympic Mixed Doubles Team Trials but represented the U.S. in team competition in PyeongChang with, of course, Shuster’s team bringing home the historic gold medal. This will be their first appearance at the international level competing in mixed doubles.
Line score, gold-medal game:
Christensen-Shuster 031 001 11 – 7
*Persinger-Plys 200 210 00 – 5
*last rock in first end
All results from the 2019 Mixed Doubles National Championship can be found at https://go.teamusa.org/2QjCNrA.
USA Curling is sponsored by AtomOS, Toyota, Nike, Brooms Up Curling Supplies, Carhartt, CryoMAX 8-Hour Cold Pack, Sitrin, The RAM Restaurant & Brewery, Thorne, ISS (Ice, Sports & Solar), and Twin Cities Orthopedics, and is partnered with Carhartt, Brakebush, Laurie Artiss Ltd. – The Pin People, United Airlines, 12th End Sports Network, IHG, and CurlingZone.
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