Koe downs Russia to improve to 3-1 at world championships

BEIJING — Calgary’s Kevin Koe improved to 3-1 at the world men’s curling championship after rolling to a 9-1 victory over Russia’s Evgeny Arkhipov on Monday. With the win, Canada moves into a tie for second place in the 12-team round-robin standings with Germany’s Johnny Jahr. The undefeated Thomas Ulsrud of Norway (4-0) has sole possession of first place.

BEIJING — Calgary’s Kevin Koe improved to 3-1 at the world men’s curling championship after rolling to a 9-1 victory over Russia’s Evgeny Arkhipov on Monday.

With the win, Canada moves into a tie for second place in the 12-team round-robin standings with Germany’s Johnny Jahr. The undefeated Thomas Ulsrud of Norway (4-0) has sole possession of first place.

“We played better and the ice was better,” said Koe.

“We had a bit more confidence out there, and we played pretty good. We didn’t have to talk so much about weight.

“Yesterday, honestly, spots were 10 to 15 feet different from each other. Today, it was a couple feet max, and that makes it a lot easier on the brains.”

Koe’s rink opened the tournament Saturday with a 6-3 win over Denmark.

But dropped a 9-6 decision to Japan Sunday before beating host China 9-6.

The Canadians were scored at 96 per cent collectively against Russia, with lead Nolan Thiessen and second Carter Rycroft both scoring perfect games.

“That felt way better,” said Rycroft. “We threw some stinkers yesterday, and we were lucky to get away with 1-1. Finally, today, we felt like we got a bit of a handle on things.

“We were throwing them properly. Still missing a few, but at least we’re throwing them with conviction. The results? You can’t worry about them too much because you still get caught on certain spots.”

Canada stole single points in each of the first four ends. Russia scored a point in the sixth, though it missed an opportunity for a potential deuce.

The game was put away in the seventh as the Russians’ attempt at a steal went south, and Koe scored five to prompt handshakes.

“We’re happy to be 3-1,” said Koe. “Obviously, we would have liked to have that (loss to Japan) back yesterday when we were up three. But that’s going to happen every once in a while. Three-and-one, that’s not a bad spot.”

Canada plays Jiri Snitil of the Czech Republic later Monday.

In their earlier game, China picked up a steal of one in the fourth end when Koe’s open takeout attempt overcurled. Canada pulled even at 3-3 with a deuce in the fifth and stole three points in the sixth end when Liu’s draw was wide.

Koe added a deuce in the eighth end and one more point in the 10th for the victory.

“That’s big,” Koe said. “I mean, you don’t want to get 1-2 this early in the week. It (would) be a long week, for sure.”

Teams are still adjusting to the ice conditions in the warm, humid Chinese capital. There have been some uncharacteristic misses over the first weekend of competition, such as Koe’s mistake in the fourth end against China.

“I didn’t think I threw it too bad in the fourth,” said Koe.

“Sometimes you throw it and you think you know what it’ll do and it still doesn’t do that. So that’s frustrating. We’re used to a little more out of ourselves, so we just have to realize that it’s tough for both teams and we have to stick with it.”

The Canadian icemaking tandem of Hans Wuthrich and Greg Ewasko have had some challenges — including a contaminated water supply — in their effort to create top-flight conditions.

“You just have to accept that there’s going to be some nuances on each sheet,” Simmons said. “If you can get control of the game and make the other team play those hard shots, then it’s obviously a big advantage.

“We were able to do that and make him shoot against a few of our rocks the one end (the seventh) and we were lucky enough to get the steal. Yeah, we’ll take it.”

The Czech Republic, Russia, China and the United States were 1-2 while Denmark and Scotland remained winless at 0-3.

The Canadians will play Russia and the Czechs on Monday.

Koe won gold in his only previous appearance at the world championship, taking top spot at the 2010 tournament in Cortina D’Ampezzo, Italy.

Canada has won gold three of the last four world championships. Jeff Stoughton was victorious in 2011 in Regina and Glenn Howard won at Basel, Switzerland in 2012.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Satnam Singh Sandhu, 42, was sentenced to six years in prison for manslaughter on Friday in Red Deer Court of Queens Bench. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Sylvan Lake man sentenced to six years for choking his wife

Satnam Singh Sandhu pleaded guilty to manslaughter

Some workers are terrified at the prospect of returning to work at Olymel, where hundreds were infected with COVID, says a worker.
Advocate file photo
Second death linked to Olymel COVID-19 outbreak, Alberta Health confirms

A second death has been linked to the Olymel COVID-19 outbreak, Alberta… Continue reading

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
New vaccine brings optimism amid rising threat of variants, high case counts

Canada’s vaccine rollout received a boost Friday with the approval of a… Continue reading

An arrest by Red Deer RCMP is facing online scrutiny. No charges have been laid and the incident is still under investigation. (Screenshot of YouTube video)
Red Deer RCMP investigating violent arrest caught on video

Police say officer ‘acted within the scope of his duties’

This image released by Briarcliff Entertainment shows Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, left, with journalist Jamal Khashoggi in a scene from the documentary “The Dissident.” (Briarcliff Entertainment via AP)
US implicates Saudi crown prince in journalist’s killing

WASHINGTON — Saudi Arabia’s crown prince likely approved the killing of U.S.-based… Continue reading

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby speaks during a media briefing at the Pentagon, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
US strike, first under Biden, kills Iran-backed militiaman

BAGHDAD — A U.S. airstrike in Syria targeted facilities belonging to a… Continue reading

Conservative member of Parliament Michael Cooper holds a press conference as he is joined virtually by fellow members of Parliament, Canadian geriatricians, mental health professionals and Indigenous leaders in Ottawa on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, regarding the Senate amendments to Bill C-7, an Act to amend the Criminal Code (medical assistance in dying). THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Address anti-Indigenous racism in health care before expanding MAID: advocates, MP

OTTAWA — The federal government should not expand access to medical assistance… Continue reading

Emily Keeping of Wetaskiwin, Alta., was last seen at 4:20 p.m. on Feb. 25, 2021 at the FasGas on 49 St and 50 Ave in Wetaskiwin. Supplied/ Wetaskiwin RCMP.
UPDATE: Wetaskiwin RCMP seek assistance in locating missing 11-year-old

Emily Keeping was last seen on Feb. 25, 2021 at the FasGas on 49 St and 50 Ave in Wetaskiwin.

FILE - Cameron Forte (right) and his Fraser Valley Bandits are 2-0 at the Canadian Elite Basketball League Summer Series after being the Saskatchewan Rattlers. (CEBL photo)
CEBL releases 14-game 2021 schedule, hopes to see fans attend games in person

Season will kick off with the Edmonton Stingers and the Fraser Valley Bandits

FILE - Keegan Messing performs during the Men’s Short program at the 2020 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships in Mississauga, Ont., Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. If the world figure skating championships do go ahead in a bubble in March in Sweden, there is a good chance Canada won’t be there. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Messing leads Canadian figure skating team at world championships

Messing was the only Canadian to compete on the Grand Prix circuit this season

Nurses episode, titled “Achilles Heel,” was first aired on Global in February 2020. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Global pulls ‘Nurses’ episode after scene with Orthodox Jews deemed anti-Semitic

TORONTO — Global TV says it has pulled an episode of Toronto-set… Continue reading

Lady Gaga is offering a $500,000 reward for the return of her two French bulldogs. (Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Lady Gaga’s dog walker shot, French bulldogs stolen in LA

Dog walker expected to survive injuries

Most Read