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World Curling: Shuster rink moves into third-place tie

Team USA won twice Monday and Tuesday to move into a third-place tie at the Ford World Men's Curling Championships.

The John Shuster rink scored freely Tuesday to close out Japan 9-1 in six ends.

It lifted USA to 4-2, tied with Scotland at 4-2 and trailing only Canada (6-0) and Norway (5-0) in the 12-team round robin. France and Germany are another game back at 3-3.

The Canadian media hasn't given Team USA much of a chance to succeed at the meet but so far the team is making a few teams take notice.

Both skips are playing that position at the worlds for the first time though Shuster played lead on Bemidji's Pete Fenson rink at the tournament three times and once at the Olympic Trials.

While Japan's Yusuke Morozumi shot only 60 percent, Shuster was near perfect at 98 to lead his team to a combined 91 percent in the rout.

The winners opened with a pair in the first, stole one in the second and two in the third. After yielding one in the fourth, they closed out the match with four in the sixth.

Shuster closed out the day facing Denmark (2-3).

Monday night, Shuster survived a scare from winless China, needing a pair in the tenth to tie and stealing one in the extra end to win 9-8.

After trailing 2-0 after two. Team USA went ahead with four in third, then traded pairs with the Fengchun Wang rink in the fourth and fifth for a 6-4 advantage.

But China tied the score with a pair in the seventh and stole singletons in the eighth and ninth to lead 8-6.

In the 10th, John Benton's second stone slipped out of the back of the house leaving the U. S. without any rocks in the house and the opportunity for China to stay a shot ahead by peeling the guards. With a loss looking imminent, a key miss by China gave the U.S. the bit of luck it needed to get the deuce and to into an extra end when Shuster converted a takeout.

The Americans got the game-winning stone in the house right from the start of the extra end and protected it throughout. China missed its final takeout and the U.S.. won.




At Moncton, N.B .

Fifth Draw

China 110-200-211-00---8

Team USA 004-020-000-21---9

Sixth Draw

Japan 000-100---1

Team USA 212-004---9

Standings: Canada 6-0, Norway 5-0, Scotland, USA 4-2, France, Germany 3-3, Denmark 2-3, Japan, Switzerland 2-4, Czech Republic, Finland 1-4, China 1-5