Sweden got its long-awaited revenge on the U.S. men’s curling team on Thursday.
The Swedes defeated Team USA, 7-4, at the National Aquatics Center in Beijing. The win comes four years after the U.S. beat Sweden in a gold-medal game matchup.
Although there was no hardware on the line, it was equally important to perform well in order to set the tone and winning mentality early in the Games.
The U.S. men got on the scoreboard early with a 1-0 lead after the first end. Sweden answered back and capitalized on mistakes made by the Americans to grab two points. In the third, USA scored a single to tie the match up, 2-2.
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Into the sixth, USA set up an easy draw move to give up two points and conceded a point, giving Sweden a 5-2 lead at the halfway point. The U.S. got back on the board with a hammer-throw to stay in the game but Sweden closed out the Americans with two more points.
Team USA’s squad consisted of John Shuster, Matt Hamilton, John Landsteiner, and Christopher Plys. Shuster, a two-time medalist, is the first curler to appear at five Olympic Games.
Sweden was led by Niklas Edin, Oskar Eriksson, Rasmus Wranaa, Christoffer Sundgren and Daniel Magnusson.
The win gives Sweden (2-0) a point towards the 10-team round-robin field. The four teams with the most wins at the end of the round-robin will get to play for medals.
Team USA falls 1-1 but returns to competition on Thursday at 8:05 p.m. ET as they take on Great Britain.