Petrov and Petrova: Sibling Superstars of Curling

(From Left) Rylyn Cooper, Kalina Petrova 27, Lily Marzullo, Georgi Petrov 24 posing together on the ice.
(From Left) Rylyn Cooper, Kalina Petrova ’27, Lily Marzullo, Georgi Petrov ’24 posing together on the ice.

Curling has emerged the most popular sport in America. Scratch that. Curling is a sport in America. If you’re reading this, I’d be shocked if you could go out on a sheet of ice and curl like a pro.

But, I wouldn’t be shocked if you thought America didn’t have many great curlers. Naturally, then, you wouldn’t assume Edison would have any either. Both assumptions, however, would be incorrect. The United States’ curling team took home gold as recently as 2018, and the South Side may be home to the future star curlers of America.

Enter Georgi Petrov ‘24 and Karina Petrova ‘27.

Petrov embarked on his curling journey when he was very young, while Petrova started a year and a half ago. Their father, a professional-level curling veteran, has used his 31 years of experience to teach Petrov and Petrova his skills.

Petrov was on and off in the sport up until the past few years when his sister started. From there, they began their path to success together.

Earlier this year in September, Petrov and Petrova participated in the 2024 Youth Olympic Games Curling Trials. In the Denver competition, they had the opportunity to qualify for next year’s Youth Olympic Games, which takes place just around the corner: in South Korea. After practicing with two other curlers (one from New Jersey and the other from Minnesota) to form their team over the summer, the team narrowly missed out on moving onto the big stage across the globe. They were inches away from making the playoffs, literally: the stone went just slightly past the target. Although they didn’t make it this year, disappointment was not the siblings’ takeaway.

“The experience overall was amazing and well worth it,” said Petrov. “The atmosphere was great as all of the people there were nice and friendly. It was a really cool opportunity.”

Despite not making playoffs, the pair qualified to compete in the 2023 USA Under-21 Curling National Championships. They will once again travel to the land of South Park and the Rockies in Colorado after placing third in the qualifiers. This January, Petrov and Petrova have a chance to cement themselves as some of America’s elite young curlers.

“The best moment in my curling career so far has to be when my sister and I qualified for nationals,” said Petrov. “We got to play together on a big stage, and we definitely made our dad proud.”

Despite curling’s status as a niche sport, basic dedication is still fundamental to success.
“Practice. Lots and lots of practice. The more you work on basic skills to build a good foundation and the more you work with your team, the better you’ll be come gametime,” said Petrov.

Petrova also acknowledged the aspect of appearance in curling.

“If you want to play good, you have to look good,” said Petrova. “We do each other’s hair and look the best we can in our pre-game, which translates to great teamwork and success on the ice.”

And while Petrova takes pride in her looks during the match, her training regime shows her pride in her work ethic as well: three to four days a week of practice on the ice ((including Saturday practices in Pennsylvania) and three days a week of workouts.

Petrov, an avid Esports player on the side, appreciates how curling has impacted his life in other ways. “It’s given me an insight as to what real sports are like (sorry Esports). The sport has helped me develop a mindset which can overcome challenges in life”.

His sister agrees.

“Curling gives me something to focus on and look forward to, building a constant drive for success,” added Petrova. “It’s also helped me achieve greater balance in school.”

Both siblings continue to improve and refine their skills and look toward a bright future in the sport.

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