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Team Canada Claims Silver Medal at Women's Worlds

Wednesday Mar 18 2015

PHOTO: WCF-Richard Gray

(Curling Canada News Release) — Gold once again remained tantalizingly out of reach for Team Canada at the 2015 ZEN-NOH World Women’s Curling Championship, presented by Ford of Canada. Jennifer Jones and her team - third Kaitlyn Lawes, second Jill Officer, lead Dawn McEwen, alternate Jennifer Clark-Rouire, team coach Wendy Morgan and national coach Elaine Dagg-Jackson — bowed 5-3 to Switzerland’s Alina Pätz on Sunday afternoon at the Tsukisamu Gymnasium.

 Pätz, 25, was facing four Canadian counters when she drew to bite a piece of the button for the victory in the 10th end to stave off a furious Canadian comeback.

 Team Canada goes home with a silver medal — the sixth straight year a Canadian team has reached the medal podium at the Women’s worlds, a streak that no other country can currently match.

 But it stretches Canada’s gold-medal dry spell at the Women’s Worlds to seven years, and prevented Jones and Co. from following up their Olympic victory last February in Sochi, Russia, with a World Championship gold.

“We made her make a good shot for the win,” said Jones. “We kind of spotted them four points that I’d like back, but we hung in there and made a good game of it. All the power to them — she made a great draw to the button to win the world championship.”

The Swiss completed a three-game sweep of the Canadians here, winning their round-robin and Page playoff encounters leading up to Sunday’s win in the final.

 Unless the previous two games, during which the Swiss scored first-end deuces, the Pätz team — third Nadine Lehmann, second Marisa Winkelhausen, lead Nicole Schwägli, alternate Carole Howald, coach Mirjam Ott and national coach Al Moore — started tentatively.

 After a blanked first, Pätz had a rare miss in the second when she was heavy on a draw to the four-foot for two and had to settle for a single.

 But Jones returned the favour in the third when she was wide with her last-rock takeout, resulting in a rollout and a stolen point for Switzerland.

 I wish we could start the game over again, but that’s just not the way the game goes,” said Jones. “We left it all on the ice, and I couldn’t really ask for ourselves to do anything more than that. We did push them, and I’m proud of the girls for that.”

The Canadians would blank the next two ends and then went hard for the deuce in the sixth. But Lawes was light and tight with a come-around attempt and the Swiss were able to put two rocks into the top four. Jones elected to draw the four-foot and was heavy, resulting in a stolen deuce for Switzerland.

 Canada would finally hit the scoreboard with two in the seventh end, and then would pull off a steal in the ninth to cut the margin to one, and had all sorts of pressure on the Swiss in the 10th.

 But Pätz — like Lehmann a former World Mixed Doubles champion —  responded magnificently with her draw for the victory.

“It's a really, really great feeling,” she said. “It's just awesome, I don't know what to say...so good. I don’t think my family and friends back home will believe it, like me. This is our first time here and it's just amazing.”

For Switzerland it was a third gold medal in four years, following the victories by Ott in 2012 at Lethbridge, Alta., (with Pätz as the alternate) and Binia Feltscher last year in Saint John, N.B. It was Switzerland’s fifth gold medal overall.

“I don't think there is any secret ingredient,” said Pätz. “I think we have a lot of good teams in Switzerland and that helps all the other teams to become better.”

Earlier on Sunday, Russia’s Anna Sidorova claimed a bronze medal at the Women’s Worlds for the second straight year, cruising to a 13-4 win over 2013 world champ Eve Muirhead of Scotland. The Russians scored five in the first end and never looked back.

 Finnish skip Sanna Puustinen was named winner of the player-voted Frances Brodie award for sportsmanship.

 Tickets for the 2016 Ford World Women’s Curling Championship, presented by Meridian Manufacturing, March 19 to 27 in Swift Current, Sask., are available at www.curling.ca/2016worldwomen/tickets/

 The 2015 Ford World Men’s Championship gets underway on Saturday at the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax. 
 
**
(Curling Canada News Release) Team Canada to Play for Gold at Women's Worlds — Gold is now within reach for Team Canada at the  2015 ZEN-NOH World Women’s Curling Championship, presented by Ford of Canada.   A 7-4 win over Russia’s Anna Sidorova on Saturday evening at the Tsukisamu Gymnasium in the semifinal has landed skip Jennifer Jones, third Kaitlyn Lawes, second Jill Officer, lead Dawn McEwen, alternate Jennifer Clark-Rouire, team coach Wendy Morgan and national coach Elaine Dagg-Jackson in Sunday’s gold-medal game against Switzerland’s Alina Pätz at 3 p.m. local time, 2 a.m. Eastern.

 Jones was on fire in the semifinal, throwing four double-takeouts along the way to lead her team into the gold-medal game after losing to the Swiss in the Page playoff 1-2 game earlier on Saturday.Switzerland has defeated Canada twice at these Women’s Worlds — 7-6 in the round robin on Wednesday evening and 6-4 in the Page playoff 1-2 game earlier on Saturday.

“It’s sweet to see; it’s awesome to sweep those and awesome to see those rocks go out of the ice,” said Officer, who, along with Jones and McEwen, were members of the most recent Canadian team to win gold at the Women’s Worlds, in 2008 at Vernon, B.C. “We had some lunch (after the earlier loss), had a rest and then we all came out firing. And obviously, she was here to play today, which was awesome. We came out on a mission, and we had to to build some confidence as a team to go into the game tomorrow.”

The Canadians shook off the disappointment of the loss to Switzerland in a hurry against the Russians. Canada came out of the gates blazing in the first end, scoring a deuce on a Jones double takeout.

 Canada would pad its lead with a stolen single in the second when Sidorova’s runback double-takeout attempt jammed, and after Russia finally hit the scoreboard with one in the third, Canada added two more points in the fourth on Jones’s cold draw to the four-foot.

 Unlike the Swiss game earlier, Canada dictated most ends and had the Russians in chase mode for most of the game, and the tone was set early.

“Honestly, the biggest shot of the game was probably the double in the first end because we we hadn’t scored a two in the morning game, and we were chasing a little bit in the first end (against Russia) and we found a way to get our deuce,” said Jones. “I think that changed the whole tone of that game. The girls played awesome; I could see we were going to come out fighting in this game. We were determined, and we wanted the opportunity to play in that gold-medal game. We showed spark and fire, perseverance and desire.”

Russia will play Scotland’s Eve Muirhead in the bronze-medal game Sunday at 9 a.m. local time.

 The Canadians, meanwhile, will play a Swiss team that is in pursuit of that country’s third world title in four years, following on the heels of Mirjam Ott in 2012 at Lethbridge, Alta., and Binia Feltscher last year in Saint John, N.B.

 Switzerland has defeated Canada twice at these Women’s Worlds — 7-6 in the round robin on Wednesday evening and 6-4 in the Page playoff 1-2 game.

“I think it comes down to execution,” said Jones. “I had two shots for two in that game and missed them, and you can’t afford to do that in a gold-medal game. We have to put some pressure on them, make some really key draws and try to make their shots hard. If we do that, and leave it all on the ice, hopefully we’ll have a shot at the win, but at least we won’t have any regrets.”

The semifinal win means Canada is assured of a sixth straight podium finish at the Women’s Worlds, and will take aim a leading 16th gold medal (Sweden is next best with eight).

“Finals are great; that’s what you play a sport for, those adrenalin rushes that go with a final,” said Jones. “What I love about our team is that we never give up; we came out here and showed grit and determination — I’m so proud to play with these girls.”

**
Team Canada 9-2, Meets Switzerland in 1-2 Page Playoff - Jennifer Jones and her Canadian team won a pair of games on the final day of round robin play (7-5 EE over Germany & 8-5 over Japan) has given them a 9-2 round robin record at the end of qualifying play. However, Switzerland kept pace with two wins (8-6 over Scotland & 7-5 over Sweden) and finished with a 10-1 record and first place on the standings board. Canada and Switzerland will meet in the 1-2 Page Playoff Game. Russia finished 8-3, thanks to a last round win over China, and has third in the standings. China and Scotland, at 7-4, will meet in a Friday morning (Thursday evening - Manitoba time) tiebreaker to determine who meets Russia in the Page 3-4 Playoff.

Standings after round-robin play (W-L):
1. Switzerland 10-1 (To play Canada in 1v2 Page Play-off)
2. Canada 9-2 (To play Switzerland in 1v2 Page Play-off)
3. Russia 8-3 (To play winner of tie-breaker in 3v4 Page Play-off)
4. China 7-4 (To play tie-Breaker against Scotland)
4. Scotland 7-4 (To play tie-breaker against China)
6. Japan 6-5
7. Sweden 5-6
8. Denmark 4-7
9. Germany 4-7
10. USA 3-8
11. Finland 2-9
12. Norway 1-10

**
Team Canada 7-2, Second Place  at Women's Worlds - It was a game which guaranteed the winner a sport in the Page 1-2 Playoff  game, Team Canada was a point short against Alina Paetz and her Swiss champions. Down two coming home, Jones looked to be in shape to score at least a two to tie but a great last shot draw by Paetz left Jones a very difficult (some would say) not possible show to tie. She did as good a she could, tapping a rock biting the button sideways off a rock behind the button. She ended up with a better bite of the button - but not good enough. Canada lost 7-6 and their 7-2 record is one win better than China, Russia and Scotland. The good news is that even  a 7-4 record from two losses by Canada (to Germany and Japan in the final two games Thursday) would not eliminate them as Russia plays China on the final draw and one of them for sure will also have a 7-4. However,with Germany at 4-5 and Japan at 5-4, one would expect better than that from the final day of play.

Thusrsday 8am game against Germany will be oin TSN at 7pm Wednesday (Manitoba time) and their final draw against Japan Thursday afternoon will be at Midnight.

Standings after 14 sessions of play (W-L):
1. Switzerland (8-1)
2. Canada (7-2)
3. China (6-3)
3. Russia (6-3)
3. Scotland (6-3)
6. Japan (5-4)
6. Sweden (5-4)
8. Germany (4-5)
9. USA (3-6)
10. Denmark (2-7)
10. Finland (2-7)
12. Norway (0-9)

**
Team Canada Improves Record to 7-1 at Women's Worlds -
Wins for Team Jones over USA (10-2) and Denmark (8-7) improved their record to 6-1, in a first place tie with Switzerland, after Tuesday's play at the World Women's Championship wrapped up in Sapporro, Japan. Canada's Wednesday schedule had them playing winless Norway on the early draw  (7pm Tuesday Manitoba time) and Team Jones improved to 7-1 with a 9-3 victory. Canada will play 6-1 Switzerland on the eveving draw (5am Manitoba time). Switzerland did not play on the early draw and is scheduled to play Norway in the afternoon before meeting Canada on the late draw.

Standings after 11 sessions of play (W-L)
1. Canada (6-1)
1. Switzerland (6-1)
3. Russia (5-2)
4. China (4-3)
4. Germany (4-3)
4. Japan (4-3)
4. Scotland (4-3)
4. Sweden (4-3)
9. Denmark (2-5)
9. Finland (2-5)
11. USA (1-6)
12. Norway (0-7)

**
Team Canada Shares Lead With 4-1 Record at Women's Worlds - Monday wins over China (7-1) and Russia (7-5), the first lost by both teams, improved Canada's record to 4-1 and they now share the World Women's Championship lead with Russia, Japan, and Switzerland. After losing to Canada, China lost their second game of the day (7-3 to Switzerland) to drop back to 3-2. On Tuesday, Canada plays winless U.S.A. (Aileen Sormunen), 12 a.m. (Manitoba time), 1-4 Denmark (Lene Neilsen), 5 a.m. (Manitoba time). They'll have a third game televised in the 24-hour period on Tuesday as their early morning Wednesday game against 0-5 Norway takes place at 7p.m. (Manitoba time) Tuesday.

1. Canada (4-1)
1. Japan (4-1)
1. Russia (4-1)
1. Switzerland (4-1)
5. China (3-2)
5. Germany (3-2)
5. Scotland (3-2)
8. Finland (2-3)
8. Sweden (2-3)
10. Denmark (1-4)
11. Norway (0-5)
11. USA (0-5)

**
Team Canada 2-1 After Opening Weekend at Women's Worlds - Canada's women's world championship began with a pair of wins over Finland and Scotland before losing game #3 to Sweden. Opening weekend began with a 9-6 win over Finland followed by a 9-4 win over Sctland's Eve Muirhead.  The game with Sweden turned on the 8th end when Sweden scored a three and followed it with a steal of one on the ninth enroute to an 8-6 Swedish win.

Monday's draw sees Team Jones playing two of the three teams who lead the way after three games - China and Russia. The game against China (Sijia Liu) will be broadcast on TSN at 7 p.m. (Sunday CDT) while the game against Russia (Anna Sidorova) will be broadcast on TSN at 5 a.m. (Monday CDT)

Standings after 5 sessions of play (W-L)
1. China (3-0)
1. Russia (3-0)
1. Switzerland (3-0)
4. Canada (2-1)
4. Finland (2-1)
4. Japan (2-1)
7. Germany (1-2)
7. Scotland (1-2)
7. Sweden (1-2)
10. Denmark (0-3)
10. Norway (0-3)
10. USA (0-3)

**
Team Canada opens play Saturday in Sapporo, Japan, at World Women's Championship -
Canada will send a competition-proven team to Japan in quest of our country’s first world women’s curling championship since 2008.  Manitoba's Jennifer Jones team (third Kaitlyn Lawes, second Jill Officer, lead Dawn McEwen, alternate Jennifer Clark-Rouire, team coach Wendy Morgan, national coach Elaine Dagg-Jackson) will open play Saturday in the 2015 ZEN-NOH World Women’s Curling Championship, presented by Ford of Canada, at the 2,321-seat Tsukisamu Gymnasium against Finland’s Sanna Puustinen at 7 p.m. Sapporo time (5 a.m. CT), the first of its 11 round-robin games.

 The Jones team is not only the reigning Olympic gold-medallist, having prevailed in February 2014 in Sochi, Russia, Jones, Officer and McEwen also captured Canada’s most recent world women’s title, in 2008 at Vernon, B.C.

 Canadian teams have finished on the medal podium at the past five world women’s championships, with Ottawa’s Rachel Homan accounting for the most recent two medals — bronze at Riga, Latvia, in 2013 and silver (losing to Switzerland’s Binia Feltscher) at the 2014 Ford Worlds in Saint John, N.B.

 The Swiss will have a different team in Sapporo, as Alina Pätz will chase back-to-back gold for her country.

 But Scotland’s Eve Muirhead — the 2014 Olympic bronze-medallist and 2013 world champ — will also be a title contender in Sapporo, as will Russia’s Anna Sidorova, the 2014 world bronze-medallist who recently claimed gold at the Winter Universiade in Spain, and Sweden’s Margaretha Sigfridsson, Olympic silver-medallist and a four-time world championship silver-medallist.

 The field is rounded out by China’s Liu Sijia, Denmark’s Lene Neilsen, Germany’s Daniela Driendl, the host Japanese team skipped by Ayumi Ogasawara, Norway’s Kristin Moen Skaslien and Aileen Sormunen of the United States.

 Round-robin play will continue until Thursday, with the top four teams advancing to the Page playoffs, which see the first-and-second place teams playing for a berth in the March 22 gold-medal game (3 a.m. CT). The loser of the one-two game drops to the semifinal (March 21, 3 a.m. CT) against the winner of the Page three-four game. The semifinal loser and Page three-four loser will play for the bronze medal on March 21 at 9 p.m. CT.

 TSN, the official broadcast partner of the Canadian Curling Association, will provide live coverage of Canada’s round-robin games, in addition to all playoff games.

 Here is Canada’s round-robin schedule, with the broadcast plans (all times CT; all games live on TSN network unless otherwise noted):

March 14 — vs. Finland (Sanna Puustinen), 5 a.m.
March 15 — vs. Scotland (Eve Muirhead), 12 a.m. (TSN2)
March 15 — vs. Sweden (Margaretha Sigfridsson), 5 a.m.
March 15 — vs. China (Sijia Liu), 7 p.m.
March 16 — vs. Russia (Anna Sidorova), 5 a.m.
March 17 — vs. U.S.A. (Aileen Sormunen), 12 a.m.
March 17 — vs. Denmark (Lene Neilsen), 5 a.m.
March 17 — vs. Norway (Kristin Moen Skaslien), 7 p.m. (TSN1/4)
March 18 — vs. Switzerland (Alina Pätz), 5 a.m.
March 18 — vs. Germany (Daniela Driendl), 7 p.m. (TSN1)
March 19 — vs. Japan (Ayumi Ogasawara), 12 a.m.

 Canada has won a leading 15 gold medals and 31 medals in total at the World Women’s since 1979, followed by Sweden with eight gold and 23 medals in total.



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