Canada clinches spot in wheelchair curling semifinals

The Canadian wheelchair curling team qualified for the semifinal round of the Paralympic tournament in Sochi with a 10-4 victory over South Korea in round-robin play on Wednesday.

Canadians defeat South Korea 10-4 in round-robin play

Dennis Thiessen of Canada throws a rock during a match against South Korea. (Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

The Canadian wheelchair curling team qualified for the semifinal round of the Paralympic tournament in Sochi with a 10-4 victory over South Korea in round-robin play on Wednesday.

After a defeat against Norway and a nervy win over China, Canada look to be back on track to go for its third-straight Paralympic gold in the sport with a solid effort against the Koreans. Canada opened up a 5-1 lead after three ends, and put the game away in the seventh by scoring four after South Korea managed to cut the margin to 6-4.

Mark Ideson subbed in for lead Sonja Gaudet in the match, and the Canadian team, which also consists of Dennis Thiessen, Ina Forrest, and skip Jim Armstrong, remain tied for first in the round-robin section with Russia after the victory, with both at 6-1 after Draw 9 was over. 

The Russians also qualified for the semis with a big 11-2 victory over Great Britain in the same draw. Canada is the reigning world champion, while Russia won the title back in 2012.

Both teams opened up some breathing space on a heavily-congested race for the final two semifinal spots. Great Britain and Slovakia hold the inside track, both at 4-3, but China, Norway, and the U.S. are all still in the mix at 3-4, with Sweden possibly joining them if it wins its next match.

The U.S. defeated China 10-2, while Slovakia beat Norway 11-4 in other Draw 9 action. 

Canada is off for the late draw on Wednesday, and is back in action on Thursday, facing Slovakia and Finland to close out the round-robin section of the tournament. The semifinals will be played Friday, while the bronze and gold medal games are on Saturday. 

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