The 32-team Safeway Championship field has been reduced to just 12 teams, with four more teams scheduled to be eliminated in B-side qualifying games Friday afternoon at the MTS Iceplex.
With 4 final berths into the eight-team playoff round on the line on today’s 4 p.m. draw, Richard Muntain will face Richard Daneault; David Kraichy will play Steve Irwin; Trevor Loreth will play Randy Neufeld; and Justin Richter will play Steen Sigurdson.
The four winners of those games will advance to face the four playoff teams that qualifed from the A-side earlier today -- Jeff Stoughton, Mike McEwen, Rob Fowler and Willie Lyburn -- on the 7:45 p.m. draw Friday evening.
Muntain, Kraichy, Loreth and Richter advanced to B-qualifiers with wins on today’s 12:15 p.m. draw. Muntain defeated Jared Kolomaya 9-7, Kraichy beat Ryan Hyde 7-5, Loreth beat Sean Grassie 7-6 and Richter beat Graham Freeman 6-5. The losers were all eliminated.
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Jeff Stoughton, Mike McEwen, Rob Fowler and Willie Lyburn -- the first, second, third and fifth seeds respectively -- have all advanced to the eight-team playoff round as play continued to unfold according to form Friday morning at the Safeway Championship at MTS Iceplex.
The four teams advanced with wins in A-side qualifying games Friday morning. Stoughton defeated Brandon’s Steve Irwin 6-3; McEwen defeated Heather’s Steen Sigurdson 7-4; Fowler defeated Granite’s Richard Daneault 4-2; and Lyburn defeated Pembina’s Randy Neufeld 8-6.
This morning’s winners now advance to the playoff round beginning at 7:45 p.m. Friday night, where they will play the winners of four B-side qualifying games that will take place Friday at 4 p.m.
Irwin, Sigurdson, Daneault and Neufeld all now have berths in those B-side qualifers, where they will in turn await the winners of four B-side games on the 12:15 p.m. draw.
The 12:15 p.m. games are: Virden’s Graham Freeman vs Riverton’s Justin Richter; Pinawa’s Richard Muntain vs Stonewall’s Jared Kolomaya; Deer Lodge’s Sean Grassie vs West Kildonan’s Trevor Loreth; and Fort Rouge’s David Kraichy vs Portage’s Ryan Hyde.
The winner of the championship final Sunday afternoon at Iceplex will go on to represent Manitoba at the Brier in Kamloops, Mar. 1-9.