Men’s Curling Night 7: Sweden clinches semifinal spot with win over Italy

Men's curling night 7: Sweden clinches spot in semifinals with win over Italy

Team USA had the night off, but four other games went on, all with big implications for the semifinals.

Sweden 7, Italy 3

Sweden lost their last game Sunday night, but it didn’t matter. Niklas Edin’s team was able to bounce back with a 7-3 victory over Italy to clinch one of four spots in the semifinals.

Sweden jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the third, and added stolen single points in the second and third to take a commanding lead early. 

The most Italy could muster was one point in the fourth, fifth and eight ends before conceding the game after the ninth.

Sweden had an 88 percent shot success rate in the game, and is now shooting 87 percent as a team for the tournament. They had 46 takeouts as a team in the game, to just 14 for Italy.

Sweden stays at the top of the table in the standings, improving to 7-1 overall, two games better than the three teams tied for second. They’ll get a game off Tuesday morning before finishing round robin play Tuesday night against Norway.

Italy falls to 2-6.

ITA   0    0    0    1    1    0    0    1    0    X – 3
SWE 3    1    1    0    0    1    0    0    1    X – 7

Great Britain 10, Norway 3

Great Britain did everything they needed to do to keep their semifinal hopes alive, defeating Norway 10-3 Monday night.

Britain shot 90 percent on takeouts as a team, to just 70 percent by Norway. British skip Kyle Smith was almost perfect early, throwing with 95 percent accuracy in the first five ends.

Smith’s team scored three points in the first end, and stole another in the second for a quick lead. Norway scored two in the third, but Britain answered, scoring two of their own in the fourth to take a 6-2 lead in the high scoring affair.

In the sixth, Norway’s final throw came up too light, landing just above the house. Britain was sitting two stones at the time, and added another with a hammer throw that just made it in for another three point end for Britain.

Norwegian skip Thomas Ulsrud underthrew on four end turn throws in the game.

With a six point lead heading into the seventh, Britain’s final throw just tapped a Norwegian stone to sit closer to the button, and Ulsrud’s throw was again not hard enough to knock it off, giving Britain a steal of another point, and forcing a concession for the win.

Great Britain improves to 5-3 overall, good for a 3-way tie for second overall in the standings. Norway is now eliminated from semifinal contention, falling to 3-4 overall.

GBR 3    1    0    2    0    3    1    X    X    X – 10
NOR 0    0    2    0    1    0    0    X    X    X – 3

South Korea 8, Switzerland 7

South Korea may be out of medal contention, but they can still play spoiler, which they did Monday night with an 8-7 victory over Switzerland.

The Korean squad, led by ChangMin Kim, scored four points in the third end to jump ahead early. Swiss skip Benoit Schwarz overcurled his final throw, missing everything and going through the house with Korea already sitting three. Kim made him pay for the mistake by landing his final throw to take a 4-1 lead.

Switzerland got their revenge in the fifth on a mistake by Kim, who underthrew his hammer throw with Switzerland sitting three stones all in a row on the center line.

Korea scored two in the eighth, but Switzerland scored one of their own to tie the score at 7-7 heading into the final end.

In the tenth, Schwarz again missed on a final throw, setting up a straight shot into the button for Korea. Kim could have gone for the takeout of the outside Swiss stones, but instead opted for the draw, and it worked. Korea scored one and celebrated another win in front of their hometown fans.

Korea still sits at the bottom of the standings, but improves to 3-5 overall. Switzerland falls to 5-3, tied with Canada and Great Britain for second overall.

KOR 0    0    4    0    0    1    0    2    0    1 – 8
SUI   1    0    0    1    3    0    1    0    1    0 – 7

Canada 8, Japan 4

Canada ended a three game losing streak Monday to keep their semifinal hopes alive, defeating Japan 8-4.

Canada took a 3-1 lead in the third, and never trailed the rest of the way. 

Leading 4-3 after the break, Canada added to their lead in the sixth scoring two more. Japan came inches away from a crucial double takeout, but just missed, giving Canada an easy double to go up three.

After scoring one more in the eighth, Canada finished the game off in the ninth, stealing a point after Japan’s final throw came up short of the house for a steal.

Canada shot 90 percent as a team in the game, improving their average through the Games to 86 percent.

Canada improves to 5-3 overall, tied with Great Britain and Switzerland for second overall. Japan falls to 3-4, tied with Norway and Team USA for fourth.

JPN   0    2    0    0    1   0    1    0    0    X – 4
CAN 1    0    2    1    0    2    0    1    1    X – 8

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