Curling

Canada's Koe downs Germany at men's curling worlds

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The Canadian Press
4/2/2014 11:44:43 PM
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BEIJING -- Kevin Koe's Calgary rink inched closer to a playoff spot at the men's world championship of curling, improving to 7-3 in the round-robin portion of the tournament with a 11-5 rout over Germany on Thursday.

Koe took an early 9-1 lead through four ends and sailed home with the win over Germany's Johnny Jahr to assure at least a tiebreaker berth on the final day of round-robin play.

The Canadians will complete the round robin with a game against Scotland's Ewan MacDonald (3-6) later Thursday.

A win in that game would nail down, at worst, a berth in the Page 3-4 game. A victory, combined with a loss from Japan's Yusuke Morozumi (7-3) would put Canada in the Page playoff 1-2 game against Norway's Thomas Ulsrud.

"It's good news," said Koe. "We've come through the three-four game a few times with this team (including the 2010 Tim Hortons Brier and the 2014 Alberta men's championship). We just have to get in there. And once we get in there, that's usually when our best games show up.

"We're pretty much down to our last life here, so we have to come out against a good Scotland team that's probably going to be playing pretty loose, and take care of business."

Canada took control early on against Germany. Koe made a precision come-around tap to sit four and block off the path to the four-foot. German last-rock thrower Felix Schulze needed to make a hit-and-roll for a single, but he wrecked on a guard to give Canada a stolen four-ender.

"That nice little hack-weight shot Kevin made in the second, that was good for his confidence," noted lead Nolan Thiessen. "We've wrecked a few times on those, so to make one and really put the pressure on him to make a really good shot against four early in the game is good.

"You'll get mistakes when that happens, and it got us a little bit of mojo and hopefully we can carry it over this afternoon."

After Germany was forced to a single in the third, Canada put the victory away with Koe drawing for four in the fourth end.

The Germans would cut into the lead with three in the fifth and one more in the sixth, but Canada scored two in the seventh to prompt handshakes. The Germans (4-6) are out of playoff contention.

Norway locked up first place Thursday morning with a 6-4 win over Pete Fenson of the United States (3-7), while Sweden (6-4) took an 11-4 win over Japan. A Japanese victory would have all but locked up a spot in the one-two game.

In the other game, Russia's Evgeny Arkhipov (2-8) took two in the 10th end for a 6-5 win over Denmark's Rasmus Stjerne (2-8).

Kevin Koe (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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