2013 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings – Canadian Olympic Curling Trials
Presented by Monsanto

Team Middaugh advances to Roar of the Rings final

Sherry Middaugh feels like she’ll be the underdog when she steps on the ice at the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings, presented by Monsanto, women’s final. But that’s OK, because she knows what her team is capable of.

Team Middaugh lead Leigh Armstrong gets some airtime while sweeping with Jo-Ann Rizzo. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Middaugh lead Leigh Armstrong gets some airtime while sweeping with Jo-Ann Rizzo. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“This team is very much a grinding team and that’s something that I’m really proud of,” Middaugh said.

Middaugh and her Coldwater, Ont., team of Jo-Ann Rizzo, Lee Merklinger, Leigh Armstrong, alternate Lori Eddy, and coach Bob Turcotte, only needed eight ends to defeat Ottawa’s Rachel Homan 10-4 in the semifinal on Friday night at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg

Middaugh and Co. will look to grind their way through one more game: the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings final against Jennifer Jones of Winnipeg. The final is scheduled for Saturday at 6:30 p.m. (all times CST).

“We’ve curled well all week. And even in the losses we curled really well and we just got out curled by one or two shots,” Middaugh said. “We’re light out there, we’re having fun, we’re making some shots.”

Middaugh picked up a big steal of three in the sixth end to put the game out of reach for Homan. Homan and teammates Emma Miskew, Alison Kreviazuk, Lisa Weagle, alternate Heather Smith and coach Earle Morris, attempted to raise back one of their stones with some weight, but the angle was off and when the rocks in the house came to a rest Middaugh was counting three and took a 9-3 lead.

Rachel Homan's dream of playing in Sochi ended with her semifinal loss to Sherry Middaugh. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Rachel Homan’s dream of playing in Sochi ended with her semifinal loss to Sherry Middaugh. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“I threw it exactly how I wanted to. I didn’t overthrow it, I threw it soft so it wouldn’t track and it floated the whole way,” Homan said.

The teams exchanged singles in the seventh and eighth ends before Homan conceded.

“We were feeling good going in and got quite a few unlucky breaks,” Homan said. “But we didn’t make too many either. Sometimes that’s the way it works.”

Middaugh meant to blank the first end, but hit the rock on the nose, taking a 1-0 lead. However, Middaugh got the hammer back at a cheap price after forcing Homan to a single in the second.

Middaugh started to run away with the game in the third end with a score of three. Homan racked her final shot on a rock in the top 12-foot leaving Middaugh with a light hit for three and a 4-1 lead. Homan bounced back with a deuce in the fourth. However, in the fifth end Homan missed her final shot and allowed Middaugh an open draw for two.

On the men’s side, Kevin Martin of Edmonton and John Morris of Vernon/Kelowna, B.C., will face each other in the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings semifinal match on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. Martin edged Morris 7-6 in an extra end during the round robin.

Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., will be watching the game closely as he will play the winner on Sunday at 2 p.m. for an opportunity to represent Canada at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings will be televised live on TSN/RDS2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring and standings are available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings, presented by Monsanto go to: www.curling.ca/2013roaroftherings-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2013roaroftherings-fr/ as soon as possible.