All-Minnesotan Team Shuster Ready for Sochi

By KBJR News 1

January 29, 2014 Updated Jan 29, 2014 at 10:41 PM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Four Minnesotans. Three Iron Rangers. Two Olympic returnees. One simple goal.

"It's gotta be a medal. Our goal was to get there, and now it's to medal," said Jeff Isaacson.

"We're going there, trying to play well and give ourselves a chance to bring back some hardware," said John Shuster.

That hardware could then end up back in the Northland. Of the four curlers, three are originally from the Iron Range. Now, they all call Duluth home.

"There's a lot of excitement around town and buzz around the curling club. It makes us pretty proud to be curlers and from Northern Minnesota," said Shuster.

While Shuster will make his third Olympic appearance and Jeff Isaacson his second, they're joined by two rookies in Jared Zezel and John Landsteiner.

"It's going to be a special moment, that's for sure," said Zezel. "We have to go out there and play our game as usual. Don't think too much in the limelight, just go out there and play."

"I'm super excited," said Landsteiner. "As each day gets closer and closer, the excitement keeps building. I can't wait to get over there and get things going."

And they'll have to get things going right away with nine preliminary matches spread over eight days. Isaacson knows it'll be a grind.

"You get to the end of the week, and you're exhausted. You're constantly thinking out there. You're talking about weight. You're talking about the shots you have to throw. Yeah, it's mentally draining."

A draining week for the guys that's made easier knowing they have their own fan club back home.

"We're playing for all of the people that play against us in leagues and come down here and wish us well and see us when we're practicing down here every day. You know there's a lot more people out there cheering for you and that want to be proud of you."

Posted by Sarah Wheeler
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