Schoolhouse Rocks! gets first win, inspiration for Vermont trip

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Schoolhouse Rocks! picked the right time for its first win of the season.

The previously-winless side defeated Schuylkill Blind Squirrels, 8-4, Tuesday night during Week 5 play of Anthracite Curling Club’s 2010 Summer League. Not only was it the first league win, the victory serves as a proper springboard for the team as it ventures to this weekend’s GNCC Arena Curling Club Team Championship in Woodstock, Vt.

(You can track the team’s progress at the championships starting Friday.)

Tuesday’s triumph started as usual, according to SR! Skip Alison Piatt. The team was able to take advantage of some poor Squirrels shooting in the 1st end and jumped to a 4-0 lead. The start was nothing new for the Squirrels, which has fallen behind first in each of its last three draws.

SR! fell victim to late surges in its first two losses, but that wouldn’t be the case this week. After drawing even over the next three ends, the Squirrels dropped four shots in the house in the 5th end, but without guards they were just frozen, granite targets for SR! shooters. By the end, SR! dropped a 3-spot on the Squirrels. A close call – requiring a measurement – gave another point to SR! in the 6th.

The win serves as inspiration to SR! as they’ll try to battle back, and hope for help, in the Steamboat Division. A loss for the Squirrels muddied the team’s plan to assert its hold atop the Buckwheat Division. The team now finds itself dead-locked with Team RAMROD, which took down Blarney, 15-3, on Tuesday night.

RAMROD scored 14 consecutive points to earn the win, including four in the 6th and 7th ends each. Blarney answered an early point with three of its own in the 2nd end, putting RAMROD on its heels, down 3-1. From there it was all RAMROD, and Skip John King credits Lead Stacey Berkowski with setting the table for those two four-point ends.

Blarney (previously Team IX) drops to 0-4 on the season and plays Work Study (Team XVI) in two weeks.

Keeping pace with the Squirrels and Team RAMROD is MLC, which improved to 2-2 on the season with a 5-3 win over Cracked Ice this week. MLC is now just a point behind both for first place in the Buckwheat Division. Cracked Ice is two wins behind C&Ds in the Chestnut Division.

Not having its regular line-up did not prevent WINOs from recording its first two wins of the season, as the team managed a rare double-header quite well. Using two substitutes, WINOs handed Stone Cold (which itself was using a sub) a 6-2 defeat in a 6 p.m. draw. Two hours later, WINOs was celebrating a 13-4 win over previously unbeaten Fifteen.

The wins vaulted WINOs into second place in the Chestnut Division, just a win behind idle C&Ds. Fifteen missed an opportunity to leap-frog into first place in the Steamboat Division, and Stone Cold drops a full win behind the Squirrels and Team RAMROD in the Buckwheat Division.

In an early draw Tuesday, Work Study (previously Team XVI) did what it could to keep pace in the tough Steamboat Division, defeating JEMM, 7-5. The win is the second for the team and evens its record, but early indications are it will take a strong effort to get atop of that race. JEMM is third in the Stove Division, but still just three points behind leaders Lyons.

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