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U.S. Juniors split on first day of World Championships

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The Aaron Wald rink split its first two matches at the World Junior Curling Championships Saturday in Perth, Scotland, belting the Czech Republic 8-3 in the opening round but falling 9-3 to Norway in the evening session.

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Today the USA champion rink, which includes Josh Bahr of Bemidji, Wald of Chisholm, Jared Zezel of Hibbing and John Muller of Hibbing, will face Sweden. Monday's USA schedule includes games against Canada and Switzerland and Tuesday the rink will battle Scotland.

The round-robin will continue Wednesday when USA will face Denmark and Finland and the preliminary round will end Thursday when Wald will battle China.

In Saturday morning's opening round Wald breezed past the Czech Republic 8-3, using the hammer to claim two points in the fifth end and stealing a pair in the sixth.

Those points vaulted Wald to a 5-2 lead and the USA champion iced the victory with a single in the eighth and two in the ninth.

Other first-round matches saw China upend Denmark 9-2, Norway edge Canada 9-7, Scotland thump Finland 8-4 and Switzerland nip Sweden 7-6.

Wald did not fare as well in the evening round as Norway used a pair of high-scoring ends to cement the win.

USA opened the scoring with a solo steal in the second but Norway answered with three in the fourth and two in the fifth.

After Wald drew within 5-3 with a pair in the sixth end, Norway settled the issue by scoring four in the seventh.

Wald conceded during play in the eighth end.

Saturday's other evening results saw Scotland tip Switzerland 7-6, Finland slip past China 9-6, Denmark belt the Czech Republic 8-3 and Sweden trip Canada 6-5.

World Junior Curling

Championships

Saturday's Results

Men's Division

Draw 1: USA 8, Czech Republic 3; China 9, Denmark 2; Norway 9, Canada 7; Scotland 8, Finland 4; Swuitzerland 7, Sweden 6

Draw 2: Norway 9, USA 3; Denmark 8, Czech Republic 3; Sweden 6, Canada 5; Scotland 7, Switzerland 6; Finland 9, China 6

Men's standings: Norway and Scotland 2-0, USA, China, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland and Sweden 1-1, Czech Republic and Canada 0-2

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pmiller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

(218) 333-9200
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