Pyeongchang Olympics Curling

Matt Hamilton sweeps during a mixed doubles curling match against South Korea on Friday.

A promising start for the American mixed doubles curling team of McFarland's Becca and Matt Hamilton has gone awry.

The Hamiltons lost their third straight game Friday to fall to 1-3 in the tournament.

Jang Hyeji and Lee Kijeong of host South Korea delivered a 9-1 thumping to the U.S. team in six ends at the Gangneung Curling Centre.

The Hamiltons defeated the Olympic Athletes from Russia in their opening match but have since succumbed to difficulties gauging ice speed.

"The other teams have been making shots and playing well. And we're just not quite capitalizing the way we did in the Russian game," Matt Hamilton said. "When they missed, we made one. Right now, we are letting the other teams off the hook."

Matt Hamilton shot just 43 percent for the game while Becca Hamilton was at 65 percent.

The South Koreans scored two points with the last shot in both the first and third ends, while the U.S. scored only one in the second.

A steal of three points against the American's last shot in the fourth end put South Korea up 7-1 and on course for a big win.

"We seemed to just struggle with the draw weight," Team USA coach Derek Brown said of Friday's second loss of the day, which came after a 9-4 defeat to Switzerland. "We seemed to be heavy, bouncing off, not taking opportunities when we had them. All credit to Korea, they played fantastically."

The Americans fell into a tie for sixth place with China, which the U.S. plays next, on Saturday (6:05 p.m. Friday Madison time).

Four teams — Canada, Norway, Switzerland and Russia — are tied for first at 3-1. The top four teams after the seven-game round robin make the semifinals.


Todd D. Milewski covers Wisconsin Badgers men's hockey and the UW Athletic Department for the Wisconsin State Journal.