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Brad Jacobs completes Canadian sweep of Olympic curling gold in Sochi

SOCHI, Russia - It was a controlled, ruthless team that completed Canada's golden sweep in curling at the Sochi Olympics.

Skip Brad Jacobs, third Ryan Fry, second E.J. Harnden and lead Ryan Harnden let loose their trademark emotion Friday after a dominating 9-3 win over Britain's David Murdoch.

A victory dash with the Maple Leaf around the Ice Cube Curling Centre preceded a synchronized hop by the whole team from the floor to top of the podium.

Canada won both men's and women's curling gold for the first time since the sport made its return to the Winter Games program in 1998. Jennifer Jones's team from Winnipeg beat Sweden in the women's final Thursday.

Canada has won three straight gold medals in men's curling with a different team every time.

"To get double gold for Canada and it be the first time ever, we're very proud of that," Jacobs said. "We're really proud to see Jen's team go out and win the gold medal for the women and then to come out and repeat as men, it's incredible, awesome and obviously meant to be."

Jacobs said he and his teammates from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., had watched the women's final on television, but turned it off before the conclusion.

As hockey players avoid touching the Stanley Cup until they win it, they didn't want to experience a golden curling moment before they had the chance to live it themselves.

"When they stole the two, we knew the game was over so we turned it off," the skip said. "We didn't want to see the presentation before we maybe had the opportunity to do the same thing."

The Canadians lift weights in the gym almost daily. Their explosive celebrations over game-breaking shots combined with their broom bangs over missed shots add to a macho image.

British coach Soren Gran said prior to the championship game he didn't like their aggressive demeanour.

"I don't know if it's necessarily the right thing to say before a big final game like that," Jacobs countered. "It only gave us more motivation to go out there and win. We believe in karma. What you saw out there today after a comment like that, it's a pretty strange thing."

What was out there was a British team that missed shots. Heavy draws or makeable takeouts where their shooter rolled out of the rings both limited their scoring and gave Canada opportunities to exploit.

"It's a little bit of a kick in the teeth," Murdoch said. "You don't want to offer up excuses. The ice was different. Maybe our adrenalin was pumping too much."

Canada had the hammer to start the game and dominated from the first throw, scoring three in the third and stealing one in the fourth for a 6-1 lead. They scored another two in the sixth for a six-point cushion.

Murdoch, a two-time world champion, third Greg Drummond, second Scott Andrews and lead Michael Goodfellow shook hands after the ninth end.

Jacobs and company didn't get the fist-pumping, broom-shaking moments they had at the trials in Winnipeg where they went unbeaten.

"It was a controlled emotion out there tonight," E.J. Harnden said. "It's easy to get overamped and you don't want to force something that's not there. You've got to go with the emotion that's in the game, not trying to falsely create it. We went with how the game was going."

"Brad has some routine shots for some big ends and you kind of go with that. At the trials, Brad made some beauties under pressure, big shots that completely broke games open."

The Canadian men started the preliminary round 1-2. Their coaches then insisted they watch before every game a video of highlights from their trials victory accompanied by thumping dance music.

"They're funny," said Canadian coach and five-time national champion Rick Lang. "They need to be pumped up. Curlers, usually it's bringing them down."

"These guys just need that energy and fire or they are ordinary. They like that house music as loud as possible."

Brad Gushue from St. John's N.L., skipped Canada to gold in 2006 and Kevin Martin's Alberta team defended it in 2010 in Vancouver.

Jacobs, 28, works as an account manager for RBC. E.J., 30, works for the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation and brother Ryan, 27, is a real estate appraiser.

The 35-year-old Fry, a curling nomad after stints with the Jeff Stoughton and Gushue curling teams, manages the team's logistics and scheduling. The third's celebration plans involved rehydration.

"Beer," Fry said. "Lots of beer."

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