Winnipeg’s Jennifer Jones and Chelsea Carey were both extra end winners at the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings at MTS Centre this morning.
Trailing Edmonton’s Heather Nedohin 5-3, Carey scored a game-tying deuce in the 10th end and then stole three more in the extra end to win 8-5 to improve her team’s record to 1-1. Nedohin, the 2012 Canadian champion, fell to 0-2.
"We felt like we were owed a break and we certainly got it in the extra end," said Carey, who had third Kristy McDonald back in the lineup today after McDonald missed Sunday’s game with the flu.
"It feels nice to have it turn around because we never felt like we were playing that bad, everything was really close. And it was like, ‘What do we have to do?’ So that’s a big, big break for us in the extra end to hopefully swing momentum for us. Because we didn’t feel like we had it all."
Meanwhile, two sheets over, Jones was authoring an almost identical script in her game with Ontario’s Sherry Middaugh, scoring a game-tying deuce in the 10th end and then stealing two more in the extra end to win 9-7. The win improved Jones to 2-0, while Middaugh fell to 1-1.
"We gave up a really bad 3 in the 7th end," Jones reflected afterward, "but the girls hung in there and found a way to win that game, which we’re going to need this week if we’re going to be successful."
Jones razored by a guard with her final rock of the extra end to remove a Middaugh stone from the button and get a small inside roll. That left Middaugh with an exceptionally difficult takeout attempt with the last rock of the game and she flashed, handing Jones the steal and the win.
With the victory, Jones and Edmonton’s Valerie Sweeting are now the last two undefeated teams remaining in the women’s field. Sweeting, who was the final women’s team to qualify for this event, continued her surprisingly strong start today with an 8-6 win over Saskatoon’s Stefanie Lawton, who fell to 0-2.
"The record is a bonus," said Sweeting. "We started that game better, but we had a bit of shaky last half, so maybe tonight we can have a solid game from start to finish."
In the only other game this morning, defending Canadian champion Rachel Homan improved to 1-1 with an 8-2 thrashing of Grande Prairie’s Renee Sonnenberg, who fell to 1-1.
Attendance for the morning draw was 4,901, bringing the total through three draws to 25,275.
The women’s field makes way for the men at MTS Centre this afternoon, but they will return to the ice for the Monday evening draw at MTS Centre. Jones plays Sweeting tonight, while Carey plays Homan.
The men’s draw at 1:30 p.m. this afternoon includes a rematch of the 2009 Brier final in Calgary between Winnipeg’s Jeff Stoughton and Edmonton’s Kevin Martin and will also be TSN’s live feature game. Winnipeg’s Mike McEwen will also be on the ice at the same time, playing defending Canadian men’s champion Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie.
The men’s and women’s fields each play a seven-game round-robin at MTS Centre this week. The winner of the round-robin advances directly to the final on the weekend, while the second and third place teams play in a semifinal.
The men’s and women’s winners next weekend will represent Canada at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.