Seventeen of the top athletes in the United States representing seven different states are in Northwest Ohio to compete for a national championship in curling. The competition ends today.
Fresh off the excitement from the Olympics, the competitive curling season continues with the first national championship to be held at the Black Swamp Curling Center. The center opened as a dedicated facility for the Bowling Green Curling Club just over five years ago.
“The club in Bowling Green has friendly people and really good fast ice,” said skip Debbie Aubrey from Coyotes Curling Club in Tempe, Arizona. “We are excited to be here and to compete for the championship.”
Also attending is lead Shelley Dropkin of Broomstones Curling Club in Wayland, Maine. She is playing for Team Smith which has four athletes from four different states and curling clubs, including skip Margie Smith who is a five-time U.S. Senior Women’s National Champion.
Dropkin’s son Korey is the skip for Team Dropkin who lost a heartbreaker to Team Schuster in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.Dropkin won the first match in a best-of-three series in the event finals, only to see Team Shuster win the final two matches. That propelled Shuster back into the Olympics to defend the gold in Beijing in February.
Shuster and Team USA went on to finish in fourth place at the 2022 Olympics. Despite missing out on the 2022 Olympics, Dropkin has had tremendous curling success and his team will represent Team USA in the 2022 World Men’s Curling Championships in Las Vegas, April 2-10.