Disappointing trek for young Scots
Scotland skip Eve Muirhead and third Anna Sloan watch as they are defeated by Switzerland at the World Women's Curling Championships in Lethbridge, Alberta March 20, 2012. (REUTERS/Andy Clark)
From plenty of promise to a huge disappointment.
When she walked into the rink for Thursday afternoon's draw, Scotland skip Eve Muirhead's fate already had been sealed.
The much-decorated skip really could not get much going this week at the women's world curling championship.
When she gave up a steal in the 10th end Wednesday night to Sweden's Margaretha Sigfridsson, she needed some help.
That never came and Muirhead was officially eliminated when Switzerland beat Korea in Thursday's morning draw.
Muirhead would have liked her final match Thursday night against Canada to mean more, but this week it wasn't meant to be.
"It's always tough at the end of the week when you know you're not in the running," Muirhead said. "We came here with hopes of qualifying for the playoffs, but it didn't go that way."
It was a downer week for a team that had won the European championship just three months ago.
"That's one of the toughest things," Muirhead said. "We're a young team, average age 21. We had a lot of pressure shoved on our shoulders. Trying to keep that up during the season is tough."
The loss to Sweden, a team the Scots beat in the European final, stung.
"All week, we've had maybe one or two hit and rolls perfect," Muirhead said. "It has been one of those weeks where we're undersweeping or oversweeping or calling line slightly wrong. On my last shot Tuesday, I wasn't 100% confident to make that and that was to keep us in the championship, so it's tough.
"I found at the start of the week, it's a lot tougher when there's a lot of pressure put on yourself.
"That's one thing I have to learn to deal with a lot better."