USA senior champions crowned

A new senior men's champion was crowned while a familiar women's skip will return to the World Senior Curling Championships as the 2015 USA Curling Senior National Championships came to a close this afternoon in Eveleth, Minnesota.

Washington's Lyle Sieg rink held on to defeat Minnesota's Ross Litman, 6-5, to win their first senior national title. In the women's division, it took two rounds of tiebreakers but Minnesota's Norma O'Leary prevailed as the champion with a convincing 9-1 victory over Shelley Dropkin's rink from Massachusetts.

Sieg (Tacoma, Wash.) and teammates Tom Violette (Issaquah, Wash.), Ken Trask (Seattle), and Steve Lundeen (Seattle) finished the competition with a perfect 7-0 record.

The championship final, however, was the closest battle for the Seattle-based rink.

Litman's team took an early advantage after stealing a single in the fourth end to go ahead 4-1 at the halfway point.

Sieg's team came out firing in the second half with four points in the fifth end.

A steal of one point in the seventh end put the team up 6-4 and they held Litman's Duluth team of Dave Johnson, Sam Perrella, and Lee Leksell to a single in the final end of play to hold on for the one-point victory.

The final women's game was less dramatic with Dropkin's team of Suzanne Roy (Hudson, Mass.), Nancy Jennett (Natick, Mass.), and Margaret Lawler (Norfolk, Mass.) scoring in the opening end with the hammer.

However, O'Leary (Silver Bay, Minn.) and her team of Linda Christensen (Duluth, Minn.), Mary Shields (Duluth, Minn.), and Lucy DeVore (Superior, Wis.) would follow up with a single and then steal the remaining ends for the 9-1 victory.

The O'Leary and Sieg rinks will now represent the USA at the World Senior Curling Championships 2015 (April 18-25) in Sochi, Russia.

This will be the third straight trip to the senior world championships for O'Leary and second for DeVore. It will be the first appearance for the Sieg team.

Final scores from the event are available courtesy of USA Curling's partner, CurlingZone.

Line scores:
Women's final:

*Shelley Dropkin (Massachusetts) 100 000 xx - 1
Norma O'Leary (Minnesota) 011 322 xx - 9

Women's tiebreakers:
Norma O'Leary 12, Sharon Vukich 2; Shelley Dropkin 8, Kathy Pielage 5.

Gold medalists: Norma O'Leary (Silver Bay, Minn.), Linda Christensen (Duluth, Minn.), Mary Shields (Duluth, Minn.), Lucy DeVore (Superior, Wis.)

Silver medalists: Shelley Dropkin (Southborough, Mass.), Suzanne Roy (Hudson, Mass.), Nancy Jennett (Natick, Mass.), Margaret Lawler (Norfolk, Mass.)

Men's final:
Lyle Sieg (Washington) 010 004 10 - 6
*Ross Litman (Minnesota) 101 110 01 - 5

*last rock in first end

Men's semifinals: Lyle Sieg 5, Bill Rhyme 2; Ross Litman 8, Jeff Wright 6 (extra end)

Men's quarterfinals: Bill Rhyme 10, Paul Matzike 3; Ross Litman 5, Paul Pustovar 4

Gold medalists: Lyle Sieg (Tacoma, Wash.), Tom Violette (Issaquah, Wash.), Ken Trask (Seattle), Steve Lundeen (Seattle)

Silver medalists: Ross Litman, Dave Johnson, Sam Perrella, Lee Leksell (all of Duluth, Minn.)

Report courtesy of USA Curling: www.usacurl.org

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