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U.S. Curling Teams Remain Winless

February 10, 1998

KARUIZAWA, Japan (AP) _ The U.S. men’s curling team, which talked confidently of a medal before the Olympics began, lost 11-3 to Canada and fell to 0-2 in round-robin play.

The eight teams play each other once, with the top four qualifying for the finals as curling makes its debut as an Olympic medal sport.

The U.S. team, composed mostly of members of captain Tim Somerville’s team from Superior, Wis., fell behind 3-0 in the first end _ or inning _ on Tuesday (Monday night EST) and trailed the 24-time world champions 5-1 in the third end. Most matches run 10 ends.

The Americans opened with a 6-2 loss to defending world champion Sweden on Monday, despite leading 2-1 late in the match. They also will play Norway on Tuesday.

In other men’s matches Tuesday, Switzerland improved to 2-0 by defeating Britain 10-4, Norway beat Germany 7-5, and Japan beat Sweden, 6-5, in overtime.

The U.S. women, who went 0-2 on Monday, were scheduled to play Germany on Tuesday.

Canada has won 24 of the 39 men’s world championships, including 11 of the last 16, although Sweden won last year. Canada also has won four of the last five women’s titles.

Curling, first played in the 16th century, is very popular in Canada, where it is nationally televised on Saturday afternoons. In the United States, it is played mostly in Minnesota and upper Wisconsin.

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