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U.S. men's curlers beat Switzerland, keep playoff hopes alive

Skip John Shuster of the U.S. reacts after winning Tuesday’s game against Switzerland at the Winter Olympics in South Korea. (REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton)

The U.S. men’s curling team defeated Switzerland on Tuesday in a Winter Olympics round-robin match at Gangneung, South Korea — and with one more win, the Americans will reach a tiebreaker game with a spot in the playoffs on the line.

The 8-4 victory for the Duluth Curling Club team means the Americans (4-4) control their own destiny going into Wednesday’s final round-robin game against Great Britain (5-3). The Americans picked up three points in the fifth end to take control of the game against Switzerland.

“We all went out there and battled. I’ve got a great team,” skip John Shuster said in a USA Curling news release. Shuster shot 97 percent in the game.

“I think John’s found his game. If he can keep that up, I like our chances,” said U.S. alternate Joe Polo of Duluth in a news release. “We need one more game to go our way and we’re in at least a tiebreaker.”

In addition to Shuster, who lives in Superior, and Polo, the U.S. team includes Tyler George and John Landsteiner, both of whom live in Duluth, and Matt Hamilton of McFarland, Wis.

Meanwhile, the U.S. women’s curling team also is 4-4 after a 9-6 loss to first-place Korea on Tuesday. The Americans take on Sweden (5-2) on Wednesday with the aim of reaching a tiebreaker game with a playoff berth on the line. The U.S. women’s team includes Aileen Geving of Duluth.