Canadian men's curlers win fifth in a row at Olympics, qualify for semifinals
Canada's skip Brad Jacobs releases the rock during the men's curling competition against Britain at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)
The Canadian Press
Published Sunday, February 16, 2014 3:11AM EST
Last Updated Sunday, February 16, 2014 3:54AM EST
SOCHI, Russia -- Sweden and Canada became the first men's teams to qualify for the Olympic curling semifinals on Sunday.
Skip Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., is 6-2 at the Olympic curling competition after winning his fifth in a row, 8-6 over the United States, guaranteeing a berth in the tournament's playoffs.
"We played all right, definitely not our best, but it's still good to get the win knowing that we didn't put our best performance together," said Jacobs.
American skip John Shuster had a chance to send the game to an extra end, but his final shot wound up just short, and the two sides shook hands.
Canada opened a 3-0 lead scoring two in the first end, and one more in the second.
Shuster put the Americans in front with two in both the third and fourth ends.
Jacobs put Canada in front scoring two in the fifth end, but the Americans tied it with one in the sixth end.
The Canadians had the chance to put the match away in the eighth end, but Jacobs missed his hammer shot, allowing the Americans to go ahead 6-5.
"I was very unhappy I missed it, it was a big shot and we almost put the game away," said Jacobs. "It was for a four and it just took a little move. We missed a line call and it just wicked the guard."
Jacobs then scored two in the ninth, and had the steal of one in the tenth end.
Even if the Canadians lose their last game -- to China in Sunday's evening session -- the worst they could finish is tied at 6-3 with Norway and Britain. They would qualify on a better head-to-head record.
Playing in front of their king, Carl XVI Gustaf, the Swedes beat Russia 8-4 in nine ends to move into the outright lead at 7-1. They are the reigning world champions.
Norway (4-3) staved off elimination with a 7-6 win over Britain (5-3).