FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 31, 2019
USA evens record at 2019 World Men’s Championship
(LETHBRIDGE, Alta.) – John Shuster and the hot-shooting American men evened their record at the 2019 Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s Curling Championship with a convincing 6-3 win over Korea this afternoon at the ENMAX Centre.
Shuster (Superior, Wis.) and teammates Chris Plys (Duluth, Minn.), Matt Hamilton (McFarland, Wis.), and John Landsteiner (Duluth, Minn.) out-shot Korea’s SooHyuk rink 90 to 75 percent to secure their first win in the 12-game round robin.
“To actually execute our goals that we had before the game, knowing what we thought we had to do to be successful, and then to go out there and execute and be successful feels pretty good and gives us a lot of confidence moving forward,” said Shuster, who shot a scorching 94 percent today.
The U.S. team bounced back after an opening-day loss to the Netherlands yesterday with precision, patience and confidence today against Korea.
“We played a really good second half yesterday, I thought. We just ran into a guy who was making everything. I thought we just built well off of yesterday, and we hope to keep building going into our game tonight against Germany,” Plys said.
The U.S. controlled the scoreboard from the first end when they took advantage of an error from Korea to force them into making a takeout to score just one point.
“Those guys are really good, and we had to stay patient,” Plys said. “I think the biggest part of the whole game was getting the force in the first end. I think we came out and made seven-and-a-half shots. That’s what Donny [Coach Don Bartlett] wanted us to do so that was good.”
The second end was blanked with the U.S. team utilizing the hammer well in the third end to set up a draw for two. A beautiful draw with Shuster’s final stone of the fourth end limited Korea to a single point once again as the Americans maintained control.
Another blank end in the fifth led to the U.S. patiently waiting for another deuce opportunity to develop. That happened in the sixth and Shuster sealed it with a draw into the eight-foot. A wonderful freeze with Shuster’s final stone of the seventh end once again limited Korea’s offense. This time, the freeze proved even more beneficial as it forced Korea to attempt a difficult angle raise that almost converted for them to score two. The end result, however, was a single steal for the American men as they extended their lead to 5-2.
A mis-step in strategy late in the eighth end by the Koreans led to trouble as the U.S. eventually had three stones in the four-foot when Kim went to throw his final stone. He was able to remove two of them but that meant the Americans stole another point to take a four-point lead. Continuing their strong play, the U.S. team was able to pluck out a half buried Korean stone with Shuster’s last toss to force Kim into a takeout to score just one. The Koreans opted to offer the handshake to conclude the game after that.
The U.S. team returns to the ice at 7 tonight to take on Germany’s Marc Muskatewitz rink, which defeated Korea this morning in an extra end.
USA 002 002 110 x – 6
*Korea 100 100 001 x – 3
*last rock in first end
Other Draw 4 session scores: Netherlands 5, Scotland 4; Canada 9, Italy 5; Japan 9, Norway 6
Draw 3 scores (9 a.m. today): Japan 9, China 6; Switzerland 5, Scotland 4; Germany 10, Korea 9 (extra end); Sweden 9, Netherlands 4
How to watch: In partnership with World Curling TV, the Olympic Channel and NBCSN are providing live coverage of eight of Team USA’s 12 round robin games plus the playoffs. To see the complete schedule, go to https://www.teamusa.org/USA-Curling/Features/2019/March/26/TV-schedule-for-World-Mens-Championship.
Live scores & social media: Live scores are posted at http://www.worldcurling.org/wmcc2019. USA Curling is posting game recaps and photos after each U.S. game at www.usacurl.org. The official event hashtags are #wmcc2019 and #curling.
Playoff format: At the conclusion of the 12-game round robin, the top six teams will advance to the playoffs. The teams ranked No. 1 and No. 2 will move directly to the semifinals. The other four playoff rinks will compete in qualification playoffs. The winners of the semifinals move on to the gold-medal game while the losing sides compete for bronze.
Team USA schedule (all times local, Mountain Time):
Sunday, 7 p.m.: USA vs. Germany (Marc Muskatewitz)
Monday, 2 p.m.: USA vs. Scotland (Bruce Mouat)
Monday, 7 p.m.: USA vs. Russia (Sergey Glukhov)
Tuesday, 2 p.m.: USA vs. Switzerland (Peter de Cruz)
Wednesday, 9 a.m.: USA vs. Italy (Joel Retornaz)
Wednesday, 2 p.m.: USA vs. China (Qiang Zou)
Thursday, 9 a.m.: USA vs. Canada (Kevin Koe)
Thursday, 7 p.m.: USA vs. Japan (Yuta Matsumura)
Friday, 9 a.m.: USA vs. Sweden (Niklas Edin)
Friday, 7 p.m.: USA vs. Norway (Magnus Ramsfjell)
Round robin results:
Netherlands 6, USA 5
USA 6, Korea 3
USA Curling is sponsored by AtomOS, Toyota, 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 Brakebush, Laurie Artiss Ltd. – The Pin People, United Airlines, 12th End Sports Network, IHG, and CurlingZone.
For more information: Terry Davis, Director of Communications, email@example.com, 608-338-9900 (mobile).