U.S. curling team advances to Olympic Qualification Event playoff

John Shuster
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The U.S. curling team won its fourth straight game at the Olympic Qualification Event. Now, it must win one more.

A rink skipped by two-time Olympian John Shuster beat South Korea 7-5 in a tiebreaker game Saturday at the Bundesleistungszentrum in Fuessen, Germany.

That advanced the U.S. to face either the Czech Republic or Germany on Sunday at 6:30 a.m. The winner of Sunday’s game will go to the Olympics. The loser will not.

“We started the week very shaky and just made mistake after mistake — rolling out, not controlling shooters, missing draws, things like that,” U.S. curler Jeff Isaacson said. “As the week’s gone on we’ve gotten a lot better handle with the rocks and ice, and it has definitely helped. We’ve been facing at least five elimination games that we’ve had to win and we’re responding pretty well to it.”

The U.S. has qualified a men’s and women’s curling team to every Olympics since the sport was re-added to the Olympic program in 1998. It is the highest-ranked nation in the eight-team field in Fuessen.

Shuster skipped the 2010 U.S. Olympic Team to last place in Vancouver, where he was temporarily benched.

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