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Canadian teams stay close to the top at 2019 Universiade

Canadian teams led by University of Alberta’s Karsten Sturmay and Kristen Streifel continue to battle for position at the 2019 Winter Universiade in Krasnoyarsk, Russia.

On Monday, Sturmay, vice-skip Tristan Steinke, second Chris Kennedy, lead Glenn Venance and coach Rob Krepps found themselves in tough against United Kingdom’s Ross Whyte, the Scottish World Junior bronze medallist , losing 12-6.

Canada’s Chris Kennedy, Tristan Steinke and Karsten Sturmay survey the scene at the 2019 Winter Universiade in Krasnoyarsk, Russia (Photo International University Sports Federation (FISU))

They bounced back with a 13-8 win over U.S.A.’s Andrew Stopera in a wild game that saw the teams exchange five-enders.

“It was a high-scoring game with lots of curl and potential for great shot-making,” said Sturmay. “That happened on both ends and they (USA) put together a great end to get five and then we bounced back to do the same thing. That was the first time I’ve seen back-to-back fives in my career.”

“Today was a bit of grind and we came a little slower then we would have liked in the morning,” he added. “But I felt the boys re-grouped and everyone got their stuff together and came on strong in the evening.”

With the win, the Canadian men now have a 2-1 record and share second place in the standings with four other teams. Leading the pack is undefeated Switzerland, skipped by Yannick Schwaller, a former World Junior gold and silver medallist.

In women’s action, Streifel and her team of vice-skip Danielle Schmiemann, second Selena Sturmay, lead Jesse Iles, alternate Paige Papley and coach Garry Coderre had a close game with Sweden’s Isabella Wranaa. Canada stole a point in nine to even the score at 5-5, but Wranaa, the 2018 World Junior silver medallist, was able to score her deuce for the 7-5 win.

“I am very proud of these athletes,” said coach Garry Coderre about the Streifel team. “We have only played three games together since we won U SPORTS nationals last year because of the commitment they had to different teams this season. So in a very short time to put a maple leaf on your back and be part of Team Canada at Universiade in Russia and be sitting with a 2-1 in two days of competition is great. We have a long road ahead of us.”

The Canadian women are in a five-team logjam for second place behind undefeated South Korea, led by Minji Kim.

Up next for the Canadian women are Switzerland (Monday 9 p.m. ET) and Great Britain (Tuesday 7 a.m. ET), while the men are up against Russia (Tuesday 2 a.m. ET).

(Photo International University Sports Federation (FISU))

Live scoring will be available on the official event website, https://krsk2019.ru/en Additionally, keep checking curling.ca for stories throughout the competition.

There will be live streaming of the 2019 Winter Universiade, including selected curling matches, at www.fisu.tv/ as well as FISU’s Youtube channel.

For information on the Canadian athletes competing in all sports at the Winter Universiade, go tousports.ca/en/international/universiades/winter-2019