Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

You snooze, you win, as Link rink discovers

Unscheduled nap helps East St. Paul team claim trophy

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An unexpected but welcome nap helped Kim Link beat Kerri Einarson's Fort Rouge foursome 9-0 in five ends to win the Curl Manitoba Women's Bonspiel at the Thistle Curling Club Sunday night.

Link drew a bye into the final when Allison Pottinger and her Bemidji, Minn., team withdrew from the semifinal to get a head start home in poor driving conditions.

Link scored two in the first and third ends, one in the second and fourth and a big three in the fifth.

"Yeah, it was nice," said Link of the unexpected bye. "We didn't know (that they had withdrawn). We went home and our coach phoned us to tell us what happened."

Things have gone pretty well this season for Link and her East St. Paul team of third Maureen Bonar, second Colleen Kilgallen, lead Renee Fletcher and fifth Pam Kolton.

"We brought Maureen on this year and she is working out really well, and fitting in fantastically with our team and we've been quite successful this year," the skip said.

Link was as surprised as anyone at the blowout.

"They used up all of their bad shots in that game. They didn't have any luck, and we had all the good luck," she said.

Einarson, the defending champion, and her crew of third Janice Blair, second Susan Baleja, and lead Alison Harvey took the loss in stride.

"Nothing worked for us tonight, and everything worked for them. Well, we got our butts kicked, but that happens. You win some, you lose some," Einarson said.

Jokingly, Einarson blamed the loss on the fact she never got around to having her snack after beating Springfield's Karen Rosser 8-2 in the only semifinal. "I'm hungry," she laughed, following her win over Rosser. "I'll probably have a wrap or something. Something healthy."

But it wasn't to be.

"That's why we lost," she chuckled. "I never got to eat my wrap."

This is the Einarson rink's second year together.

"The other members have been together for a few years and I just started skipping them last year. We had a slow start at the beginning of the year so we're hoping that going into the provincials everything will come together."

Like Einarson, Link said they were, "here to practise. Maureen lives in Brandon, so we thought it was a good opportunity to get together and play some games instead of just practising together, so that's what we did.

"We worked on game things, like how we are handling certain situations. Our technical game is what it is, so that's why we wanted to come into this bonspiel and get some games."

allan.besson@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 17, 2011 C6

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