Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Canada goes to 5-0 after beating China

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SWIFT CURRENT, Sask. -- Eventually, Jennifer Jones finished like a bull in a China shop.

Better yet, make that a Bison.

Team Canada remained undefeated at the world women's curling championship Monday night with a wild 10-9 victory over defending champion China to improve to 5-0 before another packed house of 2,400-plus at the Credit Union iplex.

After a back-and-forth affair, Jones scored a pair in the 10th end with a raise takeout to beat a struggling Chinese team that fell to 1-4.

"It was a big win for us just to keep the momentum going," Jones said. "To not play our best and still come out with a win is huge. You want a couple of those along the way, and against China it was a big game for us."

But it did come down to the last stone, with a ton of granite to navigate and the foursome from Manitoba, including third Cathy Overton-Clapham, second Jill Officer and lead Dawn Askin, needing Jones to come through again in the clutch.

"A close game is always fun to play and coming down to last rock, we haven't had one of those, to make some last rocks to win games," noted the Team Canada skip. "We had to do that today. That builds some confidence and it's good to go into the latter part of the week."

Indeed, it was a slugfest right to the finish.

After taking an early 2-1 lead, Jones gave up a deuce to the Chinese in the third, then allowed consecutive steals in the fourth and fifth ends to trail 5-2 at the break. But in the sixth, Wang muffed a double attempt that left Jones with an open draw for four to give Team Canada a 6-5 lead.

Canada looked in control again, after Wang took a single in the seventh end, before Jones put up a pair in the eighth to take a 8-6 lead.

But in the ninth, Wang had an open hit for four, but rolled just inches too far to settle for three and a 9-8 lead coming home.

Team Canada faces Denmark (3-2) this morning (9:30 a.m./TSN), then Jones and Co. will battle American Erika Brown (4-1) on the evening draw (8:30 p.m./TSN).

randy.turner@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 23, 2010 C3

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