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Team USA’s #HamFam easily defeats OAR in curling mixed doubles opener

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The last time Matt and Becca Hamilton faced off against Russia in mixed doubles curling was at the 2017 World Championships, a match in which they were defeated 7-5.

During Wednesday night’s opener of the 2018 Winter Olympics, the Hamilton’s got their revenge in a big way, defeating Team OAR 9-3 in seven ends.

The Americans, or #HamFam as they’ve become known on Twitter, jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead after Becca cleared the house with a double-takeout on the final throw of the end.

Team OAR got two back in the second, but from then on out it was all Team USA. The Hamiltons won by mere millimeters in the third, then were able to steal a point in the fourth to take a 5-2 lead midway through the game.

Team USA continued to add to their lead in the fifth by scoring two after Aleksandr Krushelnitckii burned a rock, continuing the woes of Team OAR and forcing them to use the power play in the sixth end. While OAR got a point back in the sixth off of the power play, their mistakes caught up to them. All the Hamiltons had to do was place a rock on a wide-open button in the seventh to get a six-point lead and force OAR to concede the final end.

USA 3    0    1    1    2    0    2    x – 9

OAR 0    2    0    0    0    1    0   x – 3

Jimmy Fallon plays bar curling with U.S. Olympic team (video)

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Siblings Becca Hamilton and Matt Hamilton made history on Dec. 17.

They shared another new experience just a few days later, playing bar curling with Jimmy Fallon and Jason Sudeikis on “The Tonight Show.”

The Hamiltons won the first U.S. Olympic Trials for mixed curling, an event making its Olympic debut in PyeongChang.

They could be the busiest U.S. athletes at the Winter Games, since both also qualified on respective women’s and men’s teams for the traditional Olympic curling tournaments.

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MORE: U.S. athletes qualified for Olympic team

Matt, Becca Hamilton are first U.S. Olympic mixed doubles curling team

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A brother and sister from Wisconsin will be the busiest athletes at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

A month ago the Hamilton siblings, Matt and Becca, qualified to compete at the Olympics with the U.S. men’s and women’s curling teams, and today they also qualified to play as a mixed doubles team.

With a win over two of their teammates, John Shuster (skip of Matt’s four-man team) and Cory Christensen (alternate on Becca’s four-woman team), at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for mixed doubles curling, the Hamiltons earned the opportunity to curl on potentially every day of the Olympics.

The Hamiltons will start their Olympic competitions with the mixed doubles tournament on Thursday, Feb. 8, the day before the the Opening Ceremony marks the official beginning of the Olympics. When mixed doubles wraps up on Tuesday the 13th, they’ll start playing separately in the men’s and women’s tournaments on Wednesday the 14th. The traditional curling tournaments go until Sunday, Feb. 25, the day of the Closing Ceremony.

Of course, if one of their teams doesn’t advance past the round-robin rounds to the semifinals and medal games, they’ll have some time off. But if they do go all the way to the gold medal matches, it’ll mean 18 straight days of competition for the Hamiltons.

Matt and Becca showed their readiness during the Olympic Trials. They had the second-best record of the round-robin stage, 5-2, then beat Shuster and Christensen twice in two days to win the Olympic berth. The score of the final was 6-5.

After the match, the siblings–who say their partnership works because they can be brutally honest on the ice–had nothing but kind words for each other.

Becca, the younger Hamilton by a year and a half, said her older brother “taught me everything I know.”

Matt then said of Becca, “it’s been impressive to watch her grow up and become the superstar she is now.”

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