VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- Fighting back tears, the skip of the U.S. women's curling team knew it was time to make a change.
Debbie McCormick pulled herself out of the fourth position Sunday and was set to throw third stone for a night match against defending champion Sweden. Coach Wally Henry, McCormick's father, confirmed the move after a team meeting following a 9-2 loss to Canada in a morning game.
Henry is McCormick's longtime coach and they have always worked hard to keep their personal relationship off the ice. He said McCormick's teammates embraced her team-first gesture, and he thinks it will take some pressure off the three-time Olympian until she gets her feel again.
"She's disappointed and we feel strongly she will pull out of it," Henry said. "She's been struggling all week with her draw weight. We're working on the draw weight. It just seems to leave her at the wrong time."
The Canadian women's curlers made quick work of the U.S. team, winning a shortened seven-end match to stay unbeaten.
Vice skip Allison Pottinger will step into the final throwing position.
"I'm a team player," McCormick said. "I would do anything to win."
McCormick came out to the venue for extra practice Saturday night but still couldn't pull out the big shots Sunday when she needed them. Henry said many of the shots are getting the wrong speed.
Although the men's team benched skip John Shuster for Friday's win over France, moving McCormick out of the last spot has never happened with this close-knit foursome before.
"Obviously that means I'm not playing up to my potential right now," McCormick said. "That's the only thing that's hard about it."
Cheryl Bernard scored four points in the third end after the Americans had gone ahead with one in the second. The Canadians (5-0) left three stones in scoring position before Bernard's final offering was just right -- after also taking out a U.S. stone.
Bernard shook her head in delight when she nailed her shot in the third, yet another big one for the Canadian captain. Canada looked fresh playing after a day off Saturday.
This was a rare blowout for Canada. Bernard already had two extra-end victories and two others in the 10th when she had to nail her final throw.
"It felt good to get that lead and mentally not have to be throwing tense," she said. "Some of these games you leave with a headache, so today felt really nice to leave with a nice, confident game."
Canada still had to gear up for a night match with world champion China, which had the morning session off.
Bernard said she, too, would take herself out of the final position if it ever came to that.
"It's very classy for Deb," she said. "That gets me choked up because I think that's a tough thing for her to do. She's a great player. I think her team, they believe in her 100 percent, and she's just trying to do what's best for her country."
The Vancouver Olympics and the medals race both finished in spectacular fashion for North Americans. The United States won 37 medals and Canada finished with 14 gold medals. Both are the best of these games and part of the greatest hauls ever at a Winter Olympics.
With one more perfect run down sliding's most difficult track, Steve Holcomb drove USA-1 to the Olympic gold medal in four-man bobsledding on Saturday, ending a 62-year drought for the Americans in the event.