2014 Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en Canadian Curling Association Mon, 10 Mar 2014 16:15:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6.1 Alberta captures gold medal at 2014 Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-captures-gold-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-captures-gold-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Mon, 10 Mar 2014 03:53:52 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1404 KAMLOOPS — Kevin Koe and his Alberta team scored triples in the second, fifth and seventh ends Sunday to roll to a 10-5 win over John Morris of B.C. to win the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Team Alberta, 2014 Tim Hortons Brier champions, from left, Kevin Koe, Pat Simmons, Carter Rycroft and Nolan Thiessen. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Alberta, 2014 Tim Hortons Brier champions, from left, Kevin Koe, Pat Simmons, Carter Rycroft and Nolan Thiessen. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Koe, third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, who was named playoff MVP, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn, regained the championship they had previously won in 2010, the year they also won the world title. It’s their second championship in three visits to the Brier, although the first for Simmons.

Team Alberta celebrates its Tim Hortons Brier on Sunday. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Alberta celebrates its Tim Hortons Brier on Sunday. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

B.C., with third Jim Cotter who throws last stones, second Tyrel Griffith, lead Rick Sawatsky, alternate Jody Epp and coach Pat Ryan backing up Morris, got off to a good start with two in the first end when Alberta couldn’t execute a double and left Cotter an easy draw.

But Alberta came right back in the second with three after Rycroft made a perfect triple kill, Morris slid his first rock through the house and eventually Koe had a routine hit and stick for the three.

“The first three was the big one,” said Koe. “We gave up a terrible deuce in one. We just wanted to actually blank that end and not get down. So to bounce right back with three in the next end (was great). We only missed one shot, Carter made a great triple, we had a couple of draws and that really gave us the confidence.”

“Just to answer the bell was a big thing,” said Rycroft, who curled a solid 96 per cent. “It made a statement that hey, we’re here to play today. They dominated us in the 1-2 game and we felt we kind of owed them.”

The Koe second has said he is taking next year off with his wife expecting another child this summer.

Carter Rycroft, Pat Simmons and Nolan Thiessen congratulate Kevin Koe on his shot for three in the fifth end. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Carter Rycroft, Pat Simmons and Nolan Thiessen congratulate Kevin Koe on his shot for three in the fifth end. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“It’s a fantastic honour,” he said of the MVP. “This might be my last year so I wanted to make sure I went out with a blast. I’m not the kind of guy to say I’m retiring and not coming back. I know I’m going to miss it but I’m taking the year off.”

After blanking the third, B.C. was forced to take one in the fourth and in the fifth Cotter’s try to hit and roll behind cover slid wide to the wrong side of an Alberta rock. That left Koe a delicate tap back for three and his sweepers made sure it was successful for a 6-3 lead.

“We got caught with the ice conditions,” said Cotter. “It’s not much fun right now but one day we’ll look back and be proud of this. Whether it’s in front of your home fans or wherever it’s no fun, you want to win, but that’s curling, that’s the way it goes. Against a great team like Koe, they were bang on, making everything; it’s tough to come back.”

Alberta got three more in the seventh when Cotter tried to tuck his final rock between two Koe stones in the four-foot but was inches wide, leaving Koe a straight ahead double takeout for his triple and a 9-4 margin.

“We got fooled with the ice, curled more than we had seen all week,” said a disappointed Morris. “It’s painful losing this final. Heartbreaking to lose this in the hometown of Kamloops for Jimmy. I can’t pinpoint where it went wrong. I’m usually pretty confident in putting the broom down, have been all week but today I was second-guessing a bit.”

Kevin Koe watches his shot as B.C.'s Rick Sawatsky, top, and Tyrel Griffith look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Kevin Koe watches his shot as B.C.’s Rick Sawatsky, top, and Tyrel Griffith look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Earlier in the day three-time Brier champion Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba stole five points in the first four ends and went on to beat Jean-Michel Menard of Quebec 9-5 in the bronze-medal game.

It is Alberta’s 26th Brier title, just one behind the all-time leader, Manitoba.

The Koe team will have their names added to the Brier Tankard, earn $40,000 and 45 Canadian Team Ranking System points and become Team Canada. They earn automatic berths at the 2014 world championship March 29-April 6 in Beijing, China, the 2014 Canada Cup, Dec. 3-7 in Camrose, Alberta, the 2015 World Financial Group Continental Cup, Jan. 8-11 in Calgary and the 2015 Tim Hortons Brier Feb. 28-March 8 in Calgary.

As runners-up, the B.C. team receives $40,000 and 35 CTRS points. The Stoughton team gets $30,000 and 30 points and Quebec $20,000 and 20 points. The teams that failed to make the playoffs each earn $7,000 and two CTRS points for each round-robin win.

For the first time in history, the winner of the Tim Hortons Brier will become Team Canada and will return in 2015 to defend its title. They will be joined in the 12-team main round robin by the top 10 provinces/territories based on total number of Brier round-robin wins in 2012, 2013 and 2014.

The three teams with the fewest overall wins in the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Briers – Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and the Yukon — will play in a qualifying tournament just prior to the 2015 event. They will play off with Nunavut, which is eligible to compete in the Brier for the first time in 2015, for the 12th and final berth in the field.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-captures-gold-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394472041:19<_edit_last>19YouTube0Alberta gold!<_encloseme>1<_thumbnail_id>1408http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_0241-copy-3.jpg
Award winners, all-stars at 2014 Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/award-winners-all-stars-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/award-winners-all-stars-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 21:00:40 +0000 Al Cameron http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1353 Members of the Canadian Curling Reporters (CCR) selected the first and second all-star teams for the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Kamloops B.C.Mar2_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.Fans.CCA/michael burns photo

(Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

The winners were presented at the Tim Hortons Brier Closing Reception on Sunday afternoon.

From left, Paul Wiecek (Canadian Curling Reporters president), Jim Cotter, John Morris, Mark Nichols, Rick Sawatsky, Marilyn Neily (CCA governor). (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

From left, Paul Wiecek (Canadian Curling Reporters president), Jim Cotter, John Morris, Mark Nichols, Rick Sawatsky, Marilyn Neily (CCA governor). (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

First All-Star Team
Skip: Jim Cotter, British Columbia (throws fourth rocks)
Third: John Morris, British Columbia (skips team)
Second: Mark Nichols, Manitoba
Lead: Rick Sawatsky, British Columbia

From left, Paul Wiecek (Canadian Curling Reporters president), Kevin Koe, Pat Simmons, Tyrel Griffith, Philippe Ménard, Marilyn Neily (CCA governor). (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

From left, Paul Wiecek (Canadian Curling Reporters president), Kevin Koe, Pat Simmons, Tyrel Griffith, Philippe Ménard, Marilyn Neily (CCA governor). (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Second All-Star Team
Skip: Kevin Koe, Alberta
Third: Pat Simmons, Alberta
Second: Tyrel Griffith, British Columbia
Lead: Philippe Ménard

Ontario skip Greg Balsdon accepts Ross Harstone award from CCA governor Marilyn Neily. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Ontario skip Greg Balsdon accepts Ross Harstone award from CCA governor Marilyn Neily. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Ross Harstone Award
The Ross Harstone Trophy is presented each year to the player chosen by his peers as the curler in the Tim Hortons Brier who best represents Ross G.L. Harstone’s high ideals of good sportsmanship, observance of the rules, exemplary conduct and curling ability.
2013 winner: Greg Balsdon, Ontario

Paul Wiecek, Canadian Curling Reporters president, accepts Scotty Harper Award from CCA governor Marilyn Neily on behalf of winner Bob Weeks. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Paul Wiecek, Canadian Curling Reporters president, accepts Scotty Harper Award from CCA governor Marilyn Neily on behalf of winner Bob Weeks. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Scotty Harper Award
Media Award ($500)
For the best curling story of 2013, as selected by the School of Journalism and Communication, Carleton University in Ottawa, the Award is in memory of the late Scotty Harper of the Winnipeg Free Press.
2014 winner: Bob Weeks, Ontario Curling Report, for his tribute to the late Shorty Jenkins: “Shorty Jenkins — The King of Swing.”

TSN curling producer Scott Higgins, left, presents Paul McLean award to winner Andy Bouyoukos. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

TSN curling producer Scott Higgins, left, presents Paul McLean award to winner Andy Bouyoukos. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Paul McLean Award

Named in honour of the highly-respected TSN Producer of curling, CFL football, world juniors hockey, etc., who died of cancer at the age of 39 in December of 2005.
The Award was presented for the first time in 2007 by the CCR and TSN to a media person behind the scenes who has made a significant contribution to the sport of curling.
2014 winner: Andy Bouyoukos, longtime director for TSN’s curling broadcasts.

Jany Tanguay, second from left, accepts the Asham Volunteer of the Year Award from Arnold Asham, accompanied by Canadian Curling Association governors Lena West, left, and Marilyn Neily. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Jany Tanguay, second from left, accepts the Asham Volunteer of the Year Award from Arnold Asham, accompanied by Canadian Curling Association governors Lena West, left, and Marilyn Neily. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Asham Volunteer of the Year Award
Based on the nominee’s contributions from the previous curling season.The winner receives an all-expense paid weekend trip for two to the Tim Hortons Brier to be recognized by Asham and the CCA during one of the playoff games.
2012-13 winner — Jany Tanguay, Club de Curling Kénogami, Jonquière, Que. Jany took over the junior and school programs at her home club for the 2012-13 season, revitalizing the sport in her region. She organized the curling competition at the 2013 Quebec Winter Games and created a “curl-o-brunch” at the club — an innovative open house concept that attracted hundreds of youth, adults and families and built awareness of curling in the region.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/award-winners-all-stars-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394408923:19<_edit_last>19<_thumbnail_id>1356YouTube0Award Winners!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_9310-copy.jpg<_encloseme>1
Manitoba claims bronze medal at 2014 Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/manitoba-claims-bronze-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/manitoba-claims-bronze-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 19:14:13 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1389 KAMLOOPS — Jeff Stoughton stole five points in the first four ends to build a 7-0 lead and cruise to a 9-5 win over Jean-Michel Ménard of Quebec in the bronze-medal game Sunday morning at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

 

Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton leaves the ice with a smile after winning the bronze medal at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton leaves the ice with a smile after winning the bronze medal at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

In the 4:30 p.m. PT gold-medal game John Morris of B.C. plays Kevin Koe of Alberta.

Quebec was set up to possibly steal in the first end until Ménard’s attempted hit-and-roll with his final stone was narrow and drove a guard onto his own shot rock. That left Stoughton an easy draw for two. The wheels fell off for Quebec after that.

Costly and uncharacteristic misses by all members of the Quebec team opened the door wide for Manitoba to steal two in the second, one in the third and two more in the fourth.

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard watches his shot. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard watches his shot. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“We ran out of gas,” admitted Ménard. “Quite frankly I think we left the rest of our blood yesterday when we played Alberta (in the semifinal). This morning I was totally, mentally exhausted. Playing back-to-back games yesterday and having five hours sleep because of the time change.

“We weren’t quite focused; especially me and it cost us early. I missed a couple of easy shots, just snowballed after.”

While the Quebec rink of Ménard, third Martin Crête, second Éric Sylvain, lead Philippe Ménard, alternate Pierre Charette and coach Bob Ménard struggled mightily, Stoughton and his team of third Jon Mead, second Mark Nichols, lead Reid Carruthers, alternate Garth Smith and coach Rob Meakin weren’t missing much.

Stoughton’s front end set the table in every end to prevent Quebec from generating any offence. Ménard missed on a difficult raise take-out in the second, was heavy on a draw to the four foot in the third and was wide on a tap-back in the fourth.

“They came out a little flat and it’s probably to be expected after the disappointment of their game last night,” Stoughton said of Quebec. “That happens when two teams are out there who really don’t care about the game . . . and we were lucky to be on the other side of the draw.

“We got lucky in the first end. If he makes his shot they probably steal two and they’re going to win the game.”

Quebec finally got on the board in the fifth when Ménard had an empty house to draw into for a single. The Quebec skip benched himself in the sixth, sending in Charette to skip and throw third rocks.

Quebec vice-skip Martin Crête shouts instructions to sweepers as Manitoba's Jeff Stoughton, left, and Jon Mead look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec vice-skip Martin Crête shouts instructions to sweepers as Manitoba’s Jeff Stoughton, left, and Jon Mead look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“I decided to bench myself,” said Ménard. “They seemed to have some fun, steal a few points to extend the game a couple of ends so that was good.”

At the same time Manitoba brought in Smith to play for Carruthers.

Quebec scored two in the seventh and stole two in the eighth when Stoughton was wide on a hit-and-stick and rolled out, giving Quebec two to prolong the game one more end.

Manitoba receives $30,000 and 30 Canadian Team Ranking System points for finishing third while Quebec gets $20,000 and 20 points. Teams missing the playoffs received $7,000.

Quebec had won its final four games of the round-robin to finish fourth at 7-4 to get into the Page 3-4 playoff game where they beat Manitoba 7-6 by stealing a single in the 10th end. Manitoba had finished 9-2, tied with Alberta and B.C. but got third place on the draw to the button totals.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/manitoba-claims-bronze-medal-at-2014-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>19YouTube0<_edit_lock>1394408188:19Battle for bronze!<_thumbnail_id>1386http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_8052-copy.jpg<_encloseme>1
Tankard Times – Issue 9 http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/tankard-times-issue-9/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/tankard-times-issue-9/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 15:51:36 +0000 Danielle Inglis http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1372 Here’s the ninth issue of the Tankard Times, the daily newspaper at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, BC.

 

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Click here to open the Tankard Times Daily Paper in Adobe PDF format

 

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/tankard-times-issue-9/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>45<_edit_lock>1394978964:45<_thumbnail_id>1373<_encloseme>1YouTube0
Alberta hangs on to beat Quebec in Tim Hortons Brier semifinal http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-hangs-on-to-beat-quebec-in-tim-hortons-brier-semifinal/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-hangs-on-to-beat-quebec-in-tim-hortons-brier-semifinal/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 06:59:08 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1367 KAMLOOPS — Kevin Koe made a stone-cold draw to the button with last rock in the 11th end Saturday to score a single and beat Quebec 9-8 in the semifinal at the Tim Hortons Brier,presented by SecurTek.

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard watches his shot as Alberta's Carter Rycroft, left, and Nolan Thiessen look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard watches his shot as Alberta’s Carter Rycroft, left, and Nolan Thiessen look on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Alberta will play John Morris of B.C. in the final Sunday at 4:30 p.m. PT while Jean-Michel Ménard and his Quebec team will play Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba for the bronze medal at 9 a.m. PT.

It is often said that practice makes perfect but that certainly wasn’t the case for Koe.

“When we practised this morning I couldn’t hit the four-foot to save my life so I was a little concerned,” he said after the nail-biting victory. “But I got out there tonight and it felt great. I made it perfect in nine to steal one so I just wanted to have that path for my shot in the extra. I should make that every time.”

Alberta's Carter Rycroft, top, encourages sweepers Nolan Thiessen, left, and Pat Simmons. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Alberta’s Carter Rycroft, top, encourages sweepers Nolan Thiessen, left, and Pat Simmons. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“It looked like an easy draw but it was frosty,” Ménard said of the shot. “It was pretty easy for a thrower to put a little more weight and he could slide across the house, but he put it right on the button.”

Alberta appeared in control of the game, leading 6-3 after five ends and 6-4 after six. But after giving up just two steals through the 11-game round-robin, the Albertans let Quebec steal two in the seventh to tied the game 6-6.

After Alberta missed on consecutive tries for double takeouts, Koe just rubbed a Quebec shot rock in the four-foot and slid past to let Ménard steal the two.

“I didn’t think I threw it that bad … obviously that was a big shot to let them back in it,” said Koe. “We had worked quite great to get control.”

In trying to get their own deuce in the eighth, Koe tried an angle tapback with his final stone but his rock slid too far and he had to take a single.

In nine, Koe made a perfect draw to the button that forced Ménard to try a long in-off. He was narrow and let Alberta steal a critical single for a two-point lead coming home.

The Ménard team, however, has been living on the edge for days and has refused to go away. And they weren’t going easy Saturday. When Alberta put their first two rocks of the 10th in the house, Quebec eventually used them to set up a last-rock tight double takeout that Ménard made for two to force the extra end.

“We’ve very satisfied the way we played the last six, seven games,” said Ménard. “Disappointed because the way we were playing I thought we had a sniff to win. But the magic ran out today.

Team Jacobs, from top, skip Brad Jacobs, third Ryan Fry, second E.J. Harnden and lead Ryan Harnden sign autographs on Saturday at the Interior Savings Centre. They'll have another autograph session on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time at the ISC. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Jacobs, from top, skip Brad Jacobs, third Ryan Fry, second E.J. Harnden and lead Ryan Harnden sign autographs on Saturday at the Interior Savings Centre. They’ll have another autograph session on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time at the ISC. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“We missed a couple of shots by about a quarter inch. First end that double, half inch more I make the double. A couple of other shots here and there. But we hung in tight.”

Koe and his crew of third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn had reached the Page 1-2 playoff game for the first time this year only to lose that game to B.C.

Ménard, third Martin Crête, second Éric Sylvain, lead Philippe Ménard, alternate Pierre Charette and coach Bob Ménard had knocked off Stoughton 7-6 in the Page 3-4 playoff game earlier in the day to get to the semifinal.

Alberta was in the semifinal after losing to B.C. in the Page 1-2 playoff game Friday evening.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/09/alberta-hangs-on-to-beat-quebec-in-tim-hortons-brier-semifinal/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>19<_edit_lock>1394390532:19YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1366<_encloseme>1Alberta prevails!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_8740-copy.jpg
Quebec knocks off Manitoba to reach Tim Hortons Brier semifinal http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/quebec-knocks-off-manitoba-to-reach-tim-hortons-brier-semifinal/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/quebec-knocks-off-manitoba-to-reach-tim-hortons-brier-semifinal/#comments Sun, 09 Mar 2014 01:20:54 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1344 KAMLOOPS — Jean-Michel Ménard and his never-say-die Quebec foursome stole three points in the fifth and sixth ends Saturday to knock off three-time champion Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba 7-6 in the Page playoff 3-4 game to advance to tonight’s semifinal at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Quebec's supporters were thrilled with the result of Saturday's Page playoff 3-4 game at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec’s supporters were thrilled with the result of Saturday’s Page playoff 3-4 game at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

The win was Quebec’s fifth straight after struggling to a 3-4 record to start the event. Ménard, third Martin Crête, second Éric Sylvain, lead Philippe Ménard, alternate Pierre Charette and coach Bob Ménard play Kevin Koe of Alberta in the semifinal at 6:30 p.m. PT.

Stoughton and his team of third Jon Mead, second Mark Nichols, lead Reid Carruthers, alternate Garth Smith and coach Rob Meakin will play the semifinal loser in the bronze-medal game Sunday at 9 a.m. PT. The final goes Sunday at 4:30 p.m. PT.

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard shouts instructions to his teammates during the Page 3-4 playoff game. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard shouts instructions to his teammates during the Page 3-4 playoff game. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“They get up more for the bigger teams than they do for some of the lesser teams and that’s great for them,” Stoughton said of the Ménard team that beat the top three teams in the round-robin, Manitoba, Alberta and B.C., who all finished 9-2. “They played great against Koe and great again tonight. Whatever it is is working.”

Manitoba got the deuce it wanted in the second when Ménard’s first shot wrecked on a guard. creating the chance for Stoughton to set up the two. But Quebec countered in the third with two of its own. Manitoba twice missed on double takeout attempts and Crête executed a difficult triple kill of three Manitoba stones to create the opportunity for the deuce.

“He started with a real nice deuce in the second end,” said Ménard. “I thought I made a pistol hit-and-roll but he came back with a beautiful back-12 shot. Put a little pressure on us. But then we were able to generate a deuce.

Manitoba continued to struggle with consistency through the middle ends. Mead took out his own counter in the fifth and Stoughton rolled out on a hit-and-stick try with his final rock for Quebec’s first steal.

In the sixth Quebec buried shot rock early but Manitoba had a chance for one, Stoughton needing only to draw the four-foot. But his rock slid through, leaving Quebec the steal of two for a 6-2 lead.

“The sixth end was the turning point,” said Ménard. “That piece of ice was really, really fast and he got caught and slid through. I got fooled (with his last-rock draw that slid to the back 12) and so did he when he followed me.”

Stoughton, who curled a game-low 80 per cent, said his team “blew it in the fifth end.

“The fifth end was a terrible combination of shots. We came deep on Mark’s draw, let them make a double. Then Jon bumped ours out, then we missed the hit-and-roll and then I missed the double, then I missed hit and stay for one. So we had them set up for a great deuce, maybe even three in that end. We just didn’t execute.”

The sixth he called an “horrendous end” that left him disappointed he missed the chance to score.

Manitoba third Jon Mead shows his disappointment. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Manitoba third Jon Mead shows his disappointment. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“At least we would have been back in it if we get the one in six, but we couldn’t get the shots together. They made all the shots they needed to make, didn’t have any full shot misses and hit the right side of the rocks when they had to.”

The teams traded deuces in the seventh and eighth; Stoughton successful executing a delicate hit-and-stick in the seventh but rolling out on an attempted raise takeout that left Menard a free draw for two. Manitoba got one in the ninth but ran out of rocks in the 10th.

“We have to look in the mirror; it wasn’t because of their execution, it was because of ours,” Stoughton said of his crew. “I’ve always said the only way you win is if the other team misses and we were the other team this time.

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

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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Tankard Times – Issue 8 http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/tankard-times-issue-8/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/tankard-times-issue-8/#comments Sat, 08 Mar 2014 16:55:44 +0000 Danielle Inglis http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1348 Here’s the eighth issue of the Tankard Times, the daily newspaper at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, BC.

 

 

 

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Click here to open the Tankard Times Daily Paper in Adobe PDF format

 

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B.C. heading to final at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/b-c-heading-to-final-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/b-c-heading-to-final-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Sat, 08 Mar 2014 06:11:57 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1328 KAMLOOPS — The fans in the nearly full Interior Savings Centre were chanting “Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy” by the fourth end Friday evening as they watched their local hero, Jim Cotter, pull off a highlight reel shot that sparked B.C. to a 9-5 win over Alberta that moved them into Sunday’s final of the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

The fans were out in full force on Friday to show their support for Team B.C. at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

The fans were out in full force on Friday to show their support for Team B.C. at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

“Such a great vibe in here. Jimmy being the hometown boy, such a great vibe and something special to be part of,” said B.C. skip John Morris.

The loss drops Kevin Koe and his Alberta foursome into Saturday’s semifinal.

Koe and his team struggled early with the skip coming up short with last-rock draws in both ends to allow B.C. to score two in the first and steal one in the second.

B.C. vice-skip Jim Cotter, middle, guides sweepers Rick Sawatsky, left, and Tyrel Griffith.

B.C. vice-skip Jim Cotter, middle, guides sweepers Rick Sawatsky, left, and Tyrel Griffith.

Then the Cotter show began. The Vernon resident, who grew up in Kamloops, made an angle-raise double takeout in the third that forced Alberta to take a single.

The B.C. rink of skip John Morris, third Cotter (who throws last stones), second Tyrel Griffith, lead Rick Sawatsky, alternate Jody Epp and coach Pat Ryan, couldn’t seem to miss as they became the first B.C. rink to reach the Brier final since Greg McAulay in 2000.

Even when their shots weren’t perfect, the results mostly were. In the fourth Cotter ran back his own guard, rubbed off a second guard and went into the house, spilling out two Alberta stones from the four-foot and leaving B.C. sitting three. He then made a routine raise takeout of Koe’s last rock to score three for a 6-1 lead.

“We got a little fortunate with it,” admitted Cotter. “We knew if we caught it a little thick we would get some action back. We knew if we caught on that one side, we’d get that result. We hit it really good and it worked out great.”

Koe said that shot was a good indication it was going to be B.C.’s night.

“For sure. There’s no chance they knew that was going to happen,” said the 2010 Brier and world champion. “The way it ended up we were in trouble. But I had a good freeze coming in and it just picked about a foot or two short of the rock. If it doesn’t do that it freezes right in and would have been a lot harder shot, probably only be able to get two.”

Alberta skip Kevin Koe shows his frustration during Friday's loss.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe shows his frustration during Friday’s loss.

Cotter had a rare half-miss in the fifth, getting only the front end of an attempted double and that left Koe draw for two that silenced the crowd.

But B.C. came right back with a pair in six. If Koe and his crew of third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn hadn’t concede it wasn’t their night by then they got another sign in the seventh. Simmons slipped while sweeping and kicked what would have been a good guard, leaving Morris an easy takeout of Alberta’s shot rock. Still, Koe had a chance for two with last rock but his shooter rolled out on an attempted double takeout.

“I struggled a bit, on the wrong side of the inch tonight,” said Koe. “They weren’t missing much so we were in trouble when we weren’t playing our best. Today wasn’t our day but fortunately we put ourselves in position where we have another life. We’ve done well in the semis before, we’re won both that we’ve played in.”

Alberta stole a single in the eighth but gave up a single in the ninth and shook hands.

B.C. got into the Page playoff 1-2 game when Alberta was upset earlier in the day by Jean-Michel Ménard of Quebec 7-5. Had Alberta won that game they would have played Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba in the 1-2 game.

The Menard win gave Quebec fourth place and that meant no tiebreakers.

Quebec will play Manitoba in the Page playoff 3-4 game at 1:30 p.m. PT Saturday with the winner advancing to the 6:30 p.m. semifinal against Alberta.

The Page 3-4 loser and the semifinal loser will play for the bronze medal Sunday at 9 a.m.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/08/b-c-heading-to-final-at-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394300711:19<_edit_last>19YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1332<_encloseme>1Off to the final!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_6589-copy-3.jpg
Quebec secures last Tim Hortons Brier playoff position http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/quebec-secures-last-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-position/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/quebec-secures-last-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-position/#comments Fri, 07 Mar 2014 20:43:37 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1321 One moment Jean-Michel Ménard was getting ready for an extra end and the next he was in the Page playoff 3-4 game at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard celebrates during his playoff-clinching win over Alberta on Friday. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard celebrates during his playoff-clinching win over Alberta on Friday. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

The Quebec skip had his team up 7-5 against Kevin Koe of Alberta in the 10th end Friday morning but figured he was heading for a tiebreaker game against Steve Laycock of Saskatchewan, who was leading New Brunswick 7-6 with the hammer coming home.

But Laycock’s last-rock draw slid through the house, allowing James Grattan to steal three for a 9-7 win that left Quebec just needing a win to avoid the tiebreaker.

“Coming home up two we were getting mentally ready to give up two and have to win the game in overtime,” said Ménard. “Against a team like Kevin Koe, he knows how to generate offence. But when he went to throw his first rock we saw right beside us, Steve Laycock went right through and (third) Martin (Crête) and I just looked at each other, didn’t say a word. I thought I think I’ve got a good sniff at it.”

Moments later he made a double takeout of two Alberta stones to secure his 8-5 win and a playoff berth.

Alberta's Nolan Thiessen, left, and Carter Rycroft, right, urge teammate Pat Simmons to sweep even harder

Alberta’s Nolan Thiessen, left, and Carter Rycroft, right, urge teammate Pat Simmons to sweep even harder

“Going from 3-4 to 7-4 without a tiebreaker, that’s pretty amazing. I think as a team that was probably one of the best, if not the best game of the week. It was a clutch performance.”

The Alberta loss means they will play first-place British Columbia in the 1-2 game at 6:30 p.m. PT with the winner advancing to Sunday’s 4:30 p.m. final. Quebec will play Manitoba in the 3-4 game at 1:30 p.m. Saturday with the winner playing the loser of the 1-2 game in the semifinal at 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

In the other morning games Eddie MacKenzie of P.E.I. beat Jamie Koe of Northwest Territories/Yukon 11-7 and Greg Balsdon of Ontario beat James Murphy of Nova Scotia 9-6.

The results left Alberta, B.C. and Manitoba tied with 9-2 records. The draw-to-the-button results gave B.C. first place and Alberta second. The rest of the final standings saw Quebec at 7-4, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and Newfoundland-Labrador at 6-5, Ontario 5-6, P.E.I. 4-7, Territories/Yukon 3-8, Northern Ontario 2-9 and Nova Scotia 0-11.

Ménard, Crête, second Éric Sylvain, lead Philippe Ménard, alternate Pierre Charette and coach Bob Ménard, swung the game in their favour in the middle ends by scoring three in the fifth and two more in the seventh for a 6-4 margin.

“If there’s still some magic in our bag we’ll try to use it,” against Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba, said Menard. “Finishing with four straight wins we feel pretty good. The three teams who finished 9-2, we were fortunate to beat all of them.”

Koe and his crew of third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn weren’t as sharp as they had been all week, but Koe said he wasn’t concerned going into the playoff game.

Team Saskatchewan just fell short of the playoffs after a loss to New Brunswick on Friday.

Team Saskatchewan just fell short of the playoffs after a loss to New Brunswick on Friday.

“Fortunately for us it was not the biggest game of the week,” he said. “The end we gave up three was bad luck. I threw mine good, it came within a millimetre, but it doesn’t work out. That was just a bad break. Other than that we’re throwing good so I’m not worried.”

While Ménard was quietly celebrating, Grattan and his rink were overjoyed one moment, devastated that next.

“It happened so quick,” said Grattan, who figured they were into a tiebreaker scenario after being Saskatchewan. “We thought we were in, and three minutes later we’re no better off than we were this morning. I’m pretty proud of the guys, a 1-5 start and here we are on Friday, for a split second we thought we were going to be in some sort of tiebreaker.”

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/quebec-secures-last-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-position/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394229957:19<_edit_last>19YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1320<_encloseme>1Playoffs set!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_6188-copy.jpg
Tankard Times – Issue 7 http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/tankard-times-issue-7/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/tankard-times-issue-7/#comments Fri, 07 Mar 2014 16:00:28 +0000 Danielle Inglis http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1308 Here’s the seventh issue of the Tankard Times, the daily newspaper at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, BC.

 

 

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Tankard Times Daily Paper

 

Click here to open the Tankard Times Daily Paper in Adobe PDF format

 

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/tankard-times-issue-7/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>45<_edit_lock>1394333785:45<_thumbnail_id>1311<_encloseme>1YouTube0
Playoff races heating up at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/playoff-races-heating-up-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/07/playoff-races-heating-up-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Fri, 07 Mar 2014 06:43:46 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1298 Manitoba and British Columbia did their jobs by winning their games Thursday evening and now they wait to see what Alberta does Friday in the final draw at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

B.C.'s Jim Cotter, left, and Rick Sawatsky sweep a rock during Thursday night's game. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

B.C.’s Jim Cotter, left, and Rick Sawatsky sweep a rock during Thursday night’s game. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

If Alberta beats Quebec in the 8:30 a.m. PT draw they will play Manitoba in the Page  1-2 playoff game in the evening. If Alberta loses their opponent will be B.C. Whoever does not play Alberta will play in the Page 3-4 game.

“It’s kind of interesting, Kevin (Koe) can actually pick who he wants to play,” said Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton. “If he loses he plays B.C., if he wins he plays us. But if he wins he gets hammer and colour of rocks and that’s pretty important so I’m sure he’ll be out to win.”

Kamloops B.C.Mar6_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.Northern Ontario.Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton.CCA/michael burns photo

Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton guides his sweepers on Thursday night.

Stoughton and his team of third Jon Mead, second Mark Nichols, lead Reid Carruthers, alternate Garth Smith and coach Rob Meakin, fell behind early but rallied to get past Greg Balsdon of Ontario 8-6.

John Morris and his B.C. rink of third Jim Cotter who throws fourth stones, second Tyrel Griffith, lead Rick Sawatsky, alternate Jody Epp and coach Pat Ryan scored deuces in the second and fifth ends enroute to a 6-3 victory over Steve Laycock of Saskatchewan.

In the other Draw 16 games, Brad Gushue of Newfoundland-Labrador beat Jamie Koe of Northwest Territories/Yukon 9-2 and Jean-Michel Ménard of Quebec got past Jeff Currie of Northern Ontario 7-4.

The results left B.C. and Manitoba at 9-2 behind Alberta at 9-1. Quebec and Saskatchewan are at 6-4 followed by Newfoundland-Labrador 6-5, New Brunswick 5-5, Ontario 4-6, Territories/Yukon and P.E.I. 3-7, Northern Ontario 2-9 and Nova Scotia 0-10.

Manitoba gave up three in the opening end but came back with deuces in the second, fourth and eighth ends.

“Seems like that was the theme of the week” Stoughton said of falling behind early. “He (Balsdon) made a double raise double or something like that, a great shot.  So we move on to the next end, get our deuce and keep battling back.”

Morris and B.C. took the opposite route, scoring two in the second and fifth ends, then stealing one in the eighth.

“We are real happy,” Morris said of his positioning, even if they have to go through the 3-4 route. “If you would have said at the start of the week we’d be 9-2 at the Brier we’d be really happy. It was a real good round robin. I’m proud of our team for playing so well. This is the best we have played as unit all year.”
Meanwhile, Quebec and Newfoundland-Labrador kept their playoff hopes alive with their wins.

“We need some help from Alberta or we play a tiebreaker,” said Laycock. “If we lose we are really hoping for Alberta to win and then probably playing in three tiebreakers.”

B.C. skip John Morris, top, looks over the shoulder of his rival from Saskatchewan, Steve Laycock.

B.C. skip John Morris, top, looks over the shoulder of his rival from Saskatchewan, Steve Laycock.

Saskatchewan will play New Brunswick.

Menard struggled against Northern Ontario until he cracked a three-ender in the seventh that kept him in the hunt.
“If you can play your 11th game in the Brier and it means something, it’s always good,” he said. “I hate playing games that are meaningless. Tomorrow we have a big one. We control our destiny. It won’t be an easy, but we have had some decent success against the top teams.”

Depending on the outcomes of the final draw there could be only one team at 7-4 and no tiebreakers or there could be as many as four teams – Quebec, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland-Labrador and New Brunswick – all at 6-5, creating tiebreakers that would begin Friday afternoon.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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Saskatchewan rallies to beat Ontario at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/saskatchewan-rallies-to-beat-ontario-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/saskatchewan-rallies-to-beat-ontario-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Fri, 07 Mar 2014 02:05:02 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1292 KAMLOOPS — Saskatchewan recovered from an early 4-0 deficit to score two in an extra end to defeat Ontario 9-7 Thursday and inch closer to a possible playoff berth at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Saskatchewan brothers Dallan Muyres, top, and Kirk Muyres look for sweeping instructions during win over Ontario. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Saskatchewan brothers Dallan Muyres, top, and Kirk Muyres look for sweeping instructions during win over Ontario. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Skip Steve Laycock made a routine hit-and-stick with the final stone to take the victory after Ontario, behind skip Greg Balsdon, had let a 4-0 second-end lead slide away and needed a single in the 10th to force the extra end.

The victory moved Saskatchewan to 6-3 and kept them alone in fourth place behind 9-1 Alberta, which defeated P.E.I. 9-6, and Manitoba and B.C., who are tied at 8-2.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, left, and second Carter Rycroft discuss strategy.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, left, and second Carter Rycroft discuss strategy.

In other games in the afternoon draw, Quebec beat Northwest Territories/Yukon 7-5 and N.B. got past Nova Scotia 6-5.

The results left Quebec at 5-4, New Brunswick and Newfoundland-Labrador at 5-5 and Ontario at 4-5 and all needing a lot of help to create a tiebreaker situation. Northwest Territories/Yukon is at 3-6, P.E.I. 3-7, Northern Ontario 2-8 and Nova Scotia 0-10.

“That was massive because they’re the team we have to stay ahead of,” Laycock said of the win. “Quebec won their game and are one loss behind us, too, so that was huge; it gives us a bit of a buffer tonight against B.C. Otherwise it was win out.”

Balsdon, with third Mark Bice, second Tyler Morgan, lead Jamie Farnell, alternate Steve Bice and coach Jim Wilson, got four in the second when he played a rub off his own stone in the eight-foot to kick an Ontario rock out of the four foot.

“You never want to get down four but at least it happened early,” said Laycock, who is joined by third Kirk Muyres, second Colton Flasch, lead Dallan Muyres, alternate Matt Lang and coach Lyle Muyres.

“I could see a bit of dejection in the guys’ faces so we had a little meeting at the far end before the third end. I said they’re probably going to be trying to prevent giving up three and give us two because of that, and they did. Then we got the huge break of a steal of two in four and from there it was a fight.”

Balsdon came up short of the house with his final rock in the fourth, trying to draw the button.

“The steal of two to tie the game, that hurt. I just threw it a little soft and you can’t throw soft out here,” said a dejected Balsdon. “They played well and I missed some really key shots.”

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard celebrates a made shot on Thursday.

Quebec skip Jean-Michel Ménard celebrates a made shot on Thursday.

Alberta scored four in the first end and two in the third, but just when they gained control they gave up three in the fourth and had to play tough the rest of the way to get their key victory.

“We made some great shots and the angles were all in our favour,” Koe said of the first end. “It could have even been more, had chance for five or six but it was quite risky and we didn’t feel it was worth it. If you get four in the first end you should never lose.”

Koe flashed an attempted double in the fourth to allow Eddie MacKenzie an open draw for three.

“After that they started making a lot of shots, but definitely we could have made it easier on ourselves.”

Alberta is guaranteed a playoff berth and will ensure themselves of playing in the Page playoff 1-2 game Friday night with a win Friday morning against Quebec.

In the 6:30 p.m. PT draw B.C. plays Saskatchewan and Manitoba meets Ontario in two key matches that could uncomplicated the playoff picture.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/saskatchewan-rallies-to-beat-ontario-at-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>19<_edit_lock>1394161944:19YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1291<_encloseme>1Comeback kings!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_5223-copy.jpg
Manitoba wins showdown against B.C. at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/manitoba-wins-showdown-against-b-c-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/manitoba-wins-showdown-against-b-c-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Thu, 06 Mar 2014 21:27:16 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1273 KAMLOOPS — It took a ton of great shots and a lot of near misses, and in the end Jeff Stoughton made the shot he had to in the 11th end to give his Manitoba rink a heart-stopping 7-6 win over John Morris of B.C. in the 14th draw at the Tim Hortons Brier presented by SecurTek.

Team Manitoba celebrates its win over British Columbia on Thursday at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Manitoba celebrates its win over British Columbia on Thursday at the Tim Hortons Brier. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

The result lifted Manitoba into a tie with B.C., both at 8-2 and put Stoughton into position to claim a berth in the 1-2 game if he beats Ontario in the evening draw.

“It was a great battle,” Stoughton said. “Both sides played well, both sides got a couple of breaks. We were lucky we had the brick playing the extra end. Puts us in a great position where if we win tonight we’re in the 1-2 game.”

Kamloops B.C.Mar6_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.B.C.Fans.CCA/michael burns photoIn the only other morning game, Brad Gushue of Newfoundland-Labrador won a seesaw battle with Northern Ontario 7-6 to remain at five losses and keep alive his slim hopes to get into a tiebreaker.

Alberta is 8-1 and assured of a berth in the Page playoff one-two game if it beats P.E.I. in the afternoon draw. Saskatchewan  is 5-3, Ontario and Quebec 4-4, Newfoundland-Labrador 5-5, New Brunswick 4-5, Northwest Territories/Yukon 3-5, P.E.I. 3-6, Northern Ontario 2-8 and Nova Scotia 0-9.

Manitoba and B.C. traded deuces in the first two ends – B.C. third Jim Cotter, who throws last rocks, making a tapback in the first and Stoughton doing the same in the second.

Then they took turns forcing each other to take singles through five ends until the big break came for Manitoba in the eighth when Stoughton made a raise takeout to sit two. Cotter tried for a double at the back of the house but was thin and he got only one, leaving Stoughton a routine draw for the deuce.

Newfoundland/Labrador sweepers Geoff Walker, left, and Brett Gallant.

Newfoundland/Labrador sweepers Geoff Walker, left, and Brett Gallant.

“The big shot was the angle raise to stick and get two and finally get control of the game,” said Stoughton, a three-time Brier champion who is backed by third Jon Mead, second Mark Nichols, lead Reid Carruthers, alternate Garth Smith and coach Rob Meakin.

“That’s a real tough double, one of those where you probably make one every three or four shots,” said Morris. “We missed it by a hair. One of those games where we were close but not sharp enough. Jimmy made a couple of clutch shots just to keep us in it.”

B.C. skip John Morris gets low to watch the line of a Manitoba shot.

B.C. skip John Morris gets low to watch the line of a Manitoba shot.

In the end Stoughton had a relatively straight-forward hit and stick for the winning single in eleven.

“As long as I didn’t hit it thick we were going to be okay,” he said of the shot. “About a third of a rock and I think we hit it bang on a third, exactly where we needed to hit it.

“This gives us confidence going into the playoffs. We feel we’re playing better now that at the start of the week and that’s what you want to build on.”

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/manitoba-wins-showdown-against-b-c-at-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>19YouTube0<_edit_lock>1394145592:19Big win for Manitoba!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_4809-copy.jpg<_thumbnail_id>1280<_encloseme>1
Tankard Times – Issue 6 http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/tankard-times-issue-6/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/tankard-times-issue-6/#comments Thu, 06 Mar 2014 13:31:07 +0000 Danielle Inglis http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1262 Here’s the sixth issue of the Tankard Times, the daily newspaper at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, BC.

 

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Tankard Times Daily Paper

 

 

Click here to open the Tankard Times Daily Paper in Adobe PDF format

 

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/tankard-times-issue-6/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>45<_edit_lock>1394208781:45YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1265<_encloseme>1
High-powered Alberta nails down Tim Hortons Brier playoff berth http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/high-powered-alberta-nails-down-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-berth/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/high-powered-alberta-nails-down-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-berth/#comments Thu, 06 Mar 2014 06:12:31 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1257 KAMLOOPS — Kevin Koe and his Alberta rink continued to pile up the points Wednesday, scoring a 10-5 victory over Ontario that moved them into a tie for top spot after 13 draws at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, top, gives instructions to sweepers Carter Rycroft, left, and Pat Simmons. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, top, gives instructions to sweepers Carter Rycroft, left, and Pat Simmons. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Although the score was convincing, it was a little misleading. Alberta scored two in the first end, then got a stunningly perfect draw from Koe for three in the sixth and got two in the ninth and final end when Ontario skip Greg Balsdon flashed on a double kill that would have given his team two but instead let Alberta steal a deuce.

The win moved Alberta to 8-1 while the loss dropped the rookie Ontario rink back into the chase for a playoff berth.

Saskatchewan skip Steve Laycock guides his sweepers on Wednesday.

Saskatchewan skip Steve Laycock guides his sweepers on Wednesday.

In other evening games, Steve Laycock and Saskatchewan beat Eddie MacKenzie of P.E.I. 8-5 and Jean-Michel Ménard of Quebec beat James Murphy of Nova Scotia 8-3 to keep their playoff chances alive. James Grattan of New Brunswick beat Jamie Koe of Northwest Territories/Yukon 8-3.

The results leave B.C. and Alberta, the highest-scoring team here, tied at 8-1 and assured of playoff berths, and Manitoba at 7-2 and guaranteed of a tiebreaker spot.

Then it gets interesting with teams basically fighting for, quite likely, the fourth and final playoff berth. Saskatchewan sits at 5-3, with Ontario and Quebec both 4-4. The rest of the field sees Newfoundland-Labrador and New Brunswick at 4-5, the Territories/Yukon 3-5, P.E.I. 3-6, Northern Ontario 2-7 and Nova Scotia 0-9.

“What a draw he made for three,” Balsdon said of Koe’s draw in the sixth end. “I threw two zeros, gave him a chance at three, but what a draw, to come around his (own shot) on the button to get a piece of the button.”

Koe admitted it was a tough shot and one that he, third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn “weren’t even sure it was there when we first looked at it.

“But the ice is curling so beautifully so we just kind of put it out there and let it curl in hard and, just made it. It was a bit of a guess but … we had a decent idea (of ice) It was a good all-around team effort. The guys swept it good, and Pat called the line.”

The put Alberta up 7-3 but Ontario countered with two in the seventh and gave up one in the eighth before Balsdon’s miss in nine that sealed their fate.

“My guys played great, but I have to pick up my socks and play better,” admitted Balsdon, who is backed by third Mark Bice, second Tyler Morgan, lead Jamie Farnell, alternate Steve Bice and coach Jim Wilson. “We have four losses. A tough day tomorrow with Saskatchewan and Manitoba but if we can win our last three games, 7-4 should be okay for a tiebreaker anyway, so that’s the plan.”

Ménard and his Quebec team stayed alive with another nail biter, although this one did finish in eight ends.

“The last three games have been really tough mentally,” Ménard said, mentioning extra-end games against Manitoba and Newfoundland-Labrador and others that went to the wire.

Prince Edward Island vice-skip Anson Carmody shows his intensity on Wednesday night.

Prince Edward Island third Anson Carmody shows his intensity on Wednesday night.

“We had opportunities to win the games and we didn’t. So after a while you start questioning yourself.”

It’s been nerve wracking but the skip isn’t losing sleep over the games.

“I’m very tired when I get back to the hotel, have a nice rye and Seven and then I fall asleep like a baby.”

There are three draws Thursday, beginning at 8:30 a.m., 1:30 and 6:30 p.m. (all times PT). The final round-robin draw goes Friday at 8:30 a.m. If there are tiebreakers they will follow the Friday morning draw. The one-two playoff game goes Friday at 6:30 p.m.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/06/high-powered-alberta-nails-down-tim-hortons-brier-playoff-berth/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>19YouTube0<_edit_lock>1394137679:19<_thumbnail_id>1255Piling up the Points!<_encloseme>1http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_3575-copy.jpg
Morris’s B.C. foursome assured of tiebreaker at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/morriss-b-c-foursome-assured-of-tiebreaker-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/morriss-b-c-foursome-assured-of-tiebreaker-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Thu, 06 Mar 2014 01:23:02 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1245 KAMLOOPS — British Columbia took sole possession of first place Wednesday – at least temporarily – while Manitoba improved its bid for a playoff berth at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

B.C. skip John Morris, right, and teammate Tyrel Griffith celebrate Jim Cotter's shot to score five in the third end against Ontario on Wednesday afternoon. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

B.C. skip John Morris, right, and teammate Tyrel Griffith celebrate Jim Cotter’s shot to score five in the third end against Ontario on Wednesday afternoon. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

John Morris and his Vernon/Kelowna foursome scored five in the third end to roll past Ontario 8-3 while Jeff Stoughton of Winnipeg got deuces in the first and eighth ends to get past Saskatchewan 7-4.

In other games in the 12th draw, Brad Gushue of Newfoundland-Labrador scored four in the 11th end to beat Jean-Michel Ménard of Quebec 10-6 and Jamie Koe and his Northwest Territories/Yukon crew kept alive their faint playoff hopes by scoring two in an extra end for a 7-5 win over Jeff Currie of Northern Ontario.

Saskatchewan's Kirk Muyres, second from left, shares a laugh with Manitoba's Reid Carruthers, left, Jeff Stoughton and Mark Nichols

Saskatchewan’s Kirk Muyres, second from left, shares a laugh with Manitoba’s Reid Carruthers, left, Jeff Stoughton and Mark Nichols

The results left B.C. at 8-1 and assured of at least a tiebreaker berth, followed by Alberta, which didn’t play in the afternoon draw, at 7-1, and then Manitoba at 7-2. While those three began to position themselves atop the standings, lurking close behind them is Ontario and Saskatchewan with 4-3 records.

Koe and Menard are still alive with 3-4 records while Gushue follows at 4-5, New Brunswick and P.E.I. are 3-5, Northern Ontario is 2-7 and Nova Scotia winless in eight games.

The key game in the 6:30 p.m. PT 12th draw sees Alberta take on Ontario.

“It’s amazing what a great team dynamic can do,” Morris said in explaining the success of his team that includes third Jim Cotter, who throws fourth stones, second Tyrel Griffith, lead Rick Sawatsky, alternate Jody Epp and coach Pat Ryan. “When you trust each other and work hard together you can accomplish a lot of things.”

And, he added, he’s not concerned about the pressure of the playoffs and playing at home.

“We’ve already had a bit of heat,” he said. “If you can handle the heat of the Olympic Trials, which is the most heat of the entire season for pressure, then you can handle a hometown Brier. That was a good test for us in Winnipeg. We’ve trained mentally all season and we won’t do anything different this weekend.”

Cotter executed perfectly an extremely difficult draw-weight, come-around tap back with his final stone to remove an Ontario rock from the middle of a pile of B.C. rocks to give the Morris crew five in the third end.

Quebec fans cheer on the Jean-Michel Ménard team during their game against Newfoundland/Labrador on Wednesday.

Quebec fans cheer on the Jean-Michel Ménard team during their game against Newfoundland/Labrador on Wednesday.

“That was exciting because it was one of those where it was a really tough shot, a crowd pleaser and a big lift for our team,” said Morris, who had high-fives for his teammates immediately after the shot.

The pivotal end for Stoughton and his team of third Jon Mead, second Mark Nichols, lead Reid Carruthers, alternate Garth Smith and coach Rob Meakin was a deuce in the eighth end.

“That was really big,” said Stoughton, who rubbed a guard but still got to where he needed. “A little thinner than we wanted but it managed to sneak though the hole. I knew I wanted to make sure I was thinner, just to make sure we scored a point. If I kick my one in the four-foot they’re probably going to steal one and we didn’t want to do that.”

Stoughton and Morris meet each other in Thursday morning’s 14th draw in a game that could determine the participants in the Page playoff 1-2 game.

“We’ll be gunning hard for that 1-2 game,” said Morris. “If we win tomorrow morning, we’re in the 1-2 game so we’ll be working real hard for that win.”

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions. Tonight’s coverage will follow the Toronto-NY Rangers NHL game. If the NHL game goes long, Brier coverage will begin on TSN.ca, then switch to TSN after the game.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/morriss-b-c-foursome-assured-of-tiebreaker-at-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394083968:19<_edit_last>19YouTube0On a roll!<_thumbnail_id>1240<_encloseme>1http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_3273-copy.jpg
Lead pack maintains position at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/lead-pack-maintains-position-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/lead-pack-maintains-position-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Wed, 05 Mar 2014 20:02:48 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1225 The front-runners at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, all scored wins Wednesday morning but won’t have much time to savour the victories before facing another set of tough opponents later today.

Team B.C. vice-skip Jim Cotter, top, directs sweepers Rick Sawatsky, left, and Tyrel Griffith. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team B.C. vice-skip Jim Cotter, top, directs sweepers Rick Sawatsky, left, and Tyrel Griffith. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

John Morris of British Columbia got past Brad Gushue of Newfoundland-Labrador 5-3, Kevin Koe of Alberta beat James Murphy of Nova Scotia 7-3 and Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba beat Jeff Currie of Northern Ontario 9-6. That left B.C. and Alberta at 7-1 and Manitoba in third at 6-2.

In the other morning game James Grattan of New Brunswick beat Eddie MacKenzie of P.E.I. 8-3. Going into the afternoon draw Ontario and Saskatchewan follow the top three in the standings at 4-2, Quebec is at 3-3, Northwest Territories/Yukon 2-4, Newfoundland-Labrador, New Brunswick and P.E.I. at 3-5, Northern Ontario fell to 2-6 and Nova Scotia remained winless in eight games.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, with sweepers Nolan Thiessen, left, and Carter Rycroft.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe, with sweepers Nolan Thiessen, left, and Carter Rycroft.

B.C. scored deuces in the second and fifth ends for a 4-1 lead that Gushue couldn’t cut into.

“We got our deuce early and managed to keep that two-point lead,” said third Jim Cotter, who throws last stones for B.C. “They made some great shots, where they put some pressure on us and we had to come up with some real doozies to keep them from scoring two.”

An example was the ninth where B.C. was in difficulty but managed to hold Newfoundland-Labrador to a single.

“We were looking to give up two, maybe even a possible three,” said Cotter, who made two excellent shots. “We got forced into making the double with my last one, managed to force them (to a single) so that was a big hold. Being up two coming home is lot better than being one up.”

The loss for Gushue was his fifth and in all probability ensured his hopes for his first Brier championship will end unsuccessfully, as did his previous 10 visits.

“That game was a perfect sample of our week,” said Gushue. “I felt like I was facing three, four yellows every time I stepped into the hack. Just never seen a whole lot of shots made in front of me so we never got any ends set up all week.

“I had high hopes for today but (it was the) same sort of thing; we just never got rocks set up and made it real easy for John and Jim.”

Koe also jumped into an early lead, scoring three in the second end and then never gave Nova Scotia much chance to recover.

Brier Bear hangs with the crowd at the Interior Savings Centre.

Brier Bear hangs with the crowd at the Interior Savings Centre.

“They just played a bad end really,” Koe said of the second. “We were in control all end and sitting three or four for the most part so sort of a risk-free try for three. He had a real hard double to cut us down to two and just missed it.”

The 2010 Brier and world champion said the outcome was the result of his team making all the big shots and Nova Scotia not.

“(Murphy) had a shot for three (in the fourth end) to take the lead and missed it and instead we stole. After that point we were in control the rest of the way.”

While Alberta gets the afternoon off, B.C. and Manitoba had time for lunch before returning to the ice for two more key games.

In the 1 p.m. PT 12th draw, B.C. will play 4-2 Ontario and Manitoba will meet 4-2 Saskatchewan. Alberta plays Ontario in the 6:30 p.m. PT evening draw.

“We’re in a good position but we’re going to get focused for our one o’clock game,” said Cotter. “(Ontario) is a great team. We played them at Pre-trials and had a real good game there so we know we’re in tough.”

For B.C. and Alberta the task is to not have any missteps their final three games.

“Well, that’s easier said than done,” said Koe. “We have Ontario tonight and they only have a couple of losses. They have kind of being flying under the radar so far this week so that will be a big game for us. If we can win that we will be in good shape.”

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/lead-pack-maintains-position-at-tim-hortons-brier/feed/ 0 <_edit_lock>1394065517:19<_edit_last>19YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1230On the move!http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/files/2014/03/DSC_2499-copy-3.jpg<_encloseme>1
Tankard Times – Issue 5 http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/tankard-times-issue-5/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/tankard-times-issue-5/#comments Wed, 05 Mar 2014 15:29:57 +0000 Danielle Inglis http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1217 Here’s the fifth issue of the Tankard Times, the daily newspaper at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, BC.

 

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Tankard Times Daily Paper

Click here to open the Tankard Times Daily Paper in Adobe PDF format

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http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/tankard-times-issue-5/feed/ 0 <_edit_last>6<_edit_lock>1394112520:45YouTube0<_thumbnail_id>1220<_encloseme>1
Koe’s Alberta squad on a roll at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/koes-alberta-squad-on-a-roll-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/05/koes-alberta-squad-on-a-roll-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Wed, 05 Mar 2014 06:25:01 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1206 In his previous two visits to the Tim Hortons Brier, this year presented by SecurTek, Kevin Koe has never taken the easy route to victory, even when he won the event in 2010. But he took a big step towards that possibility Tuesday evening.

Alberta skip Kevin Koe shows some fancy footwork in the house during his team's win over Saskatchewan on Tuesday night. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

Alberta skip Kevin Koe shows some fancy footwork in the house during his team’s win over Saskatchewan on Tuesday night. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

“This is our third Brier and we’ve never been in that Page one-two game, so it would be nice to get there.” the Calgary skip said after beating Saskatchewan 8-6 in the 10th draw to move into a tie for top spot with British Columbia at the Interior Savings Centre in Kamloops. “We’re used to doing it the hard way, in the three-four game, so if you can stay at the top of the leaderboard for most of the way that’s what you want to do.”

Koe, third Pat Simmons, second Carter Rycroft, lead Nolan Thiessen, alternate Jamie King and coach John Dunn had a tough outing against Saskatchewan but they made more of the key shots than Steve Laycock and his Saskatoon foursome.

Ontario skip Greg Balsdon, top, instructs sweepers Mark Bice, left, and Jamie Farnell.

Ontario skip Greg Balsdon, top, instructs sweepers Mark Bice, left, and Jamie Farnell.

“Other than I missed one bad one we made all the important ones,” conceded Koe. “That’s kind of what you have to do. We put a bit of pressure on them a couple of times to get the one steal (two in the ninth end).”

Alberta jumped on Saskatchewan misses to score deuces in the third and fifth ends and to steal one in the sixth and two in the ninth that killed the hopes of skip Steve Laycock, third Kirk Muyres, second Colton Flasch, lead Dallas Muyres, alternate Matt Lang and coach Lyle Muyres.

“The real problem was we had lots of chances in that ninth end to set up a two and were just heavy on a few hit and rolls and taps and stuff and didn’t get rocks in position,” said a subdued Laycock. “That was disappointing because we played a real nice shot in eight to get them down to one.

“We needed a couple more mistakes from them and didn’t get it.”

In the other evening games, Greg Balsdon of Ontario beat Eddie MacKenzie of P.E.I. 8-3, James Grattan made a clutch last-rock raised tapback for two in the 11th end to nip Jean-Michel Menard of Quebec 10-8 and Jamie Koe of Northwest Territories/Yukon rolled to a 7-4 win over Nova Scotia’s Jamie Murphy.

The results left B.C. and Alberta atop the standings at 6-1. Manitoba is 5-2 followed by Ontario and Saskatchewan 4-2, Quebec 3-3, Newfoundland-Labrador and P.E.I. at 3-4, Northwest Territories/Yukon 2-4, Northern Ontario and New Brunswick 2-5 and Nova Scotia 0-7.

Quebec vice-skip Martin Crête, right, shouts to his sweepers as New Brunswick second Darren Roach looks on

Quebec vice-skip Martin Crête, right, shouts to his sweepers as New Brunswick second Darren Roach looks on

Balsdon and his rookie Ontario foursome kept themselves in the playoff mix with their easy victory, although they have a tough schedule ahead of them.

“We’ve got a tough stretch coming up,” agreed Balsdon. “We’ve got Johnny Mo (British Columbia), Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta our next four games. If we could even split those games, end up 6-4 heading into the last draw, I think we would take it.”

It’s nice, he said, not having to rely on help from other rinks.

“It’s nice to have it in your own hands, at this point. We’re playing well, our two losses we ran into two hot skips … but we’re feeling pretty good.”

There are three draws Wednesday beginning at 8 a.m., 1 and 6:30 p.m. (all times PT).

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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B.C. giving Kamloops fans reason to cheer at Tim Hortons Brier http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/04/b-c-giving-kamloops-fans-reason-to-cheer-at-tim-hortons-brier/ http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/2014/03/04/b-c-giving-kamloops-fans-reason-to-cheer-at-tim-hortons-brier/#comments Wed, 05 Mar 2014 01:40:44 +0000 John Korobanik http://www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/?p=1200 They are the hometown favourites featuring Kamloops-born Jim Cotter, and Team British Columbia continued to give the crowds plenty of cheer about with a fourth straight victory Tuesday in the ninth draw at the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek.

British Columbia skip John Morris instructs sweepers Tyrel Griffith, left, and Rick Sawatsky. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

British Columbia skip John Morris instructs sweepers Tyrel Griffith, left, and Rick Sawatsky. (Photos, CCA/Michael Burns)

“We’re getting stronger and stronger,” skip John Morris said after B.C. rolled to a 9-3 win over James Grattan of New Brunswick to improve to 6-1. “We snuck some wins out early with some character-builders and now we’re starting to get a handle on the rocks, a real positive thing to see.”

Perhaps nothing was more positive looking Tuesday than the shot-making of Cotter, who throws last rocks. He curled 91 per cent in the latest win but it wasn’t his percentage that stood out, but, rather, his clutch shooting.

Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton assesses the situation during Tuesday's game against Nova Scotia.

Manitoba skip Jeff Stoughton assesses the situation during Tuesday’s game against Nova Scotia.

In the sixth end, with the game tied 3-3, he made a tough, last-rock triple kill for three to give B.C. control. Lead Rick Sawatsky, who has curled with Cotter for more than a decade, including four Briers, said he had no doubt the shot would be successful

“No, not a doubt really,” said Sawatsky, a native of Sioux Lookout, Ont., “John knows the spot pretty well, it was just a matter of Jimmy throwing it really well and he just threw it pure.

“He’s feeling it, you can tell. He’s throwing it a lot better, he’s getting his draw weight down pat and he’s made a lot of big shots for us the last couple of days. He’s been really clutch for us.”

Other members of the B.C. team are second Tyrel Griffith, alternate Jody Epp and coach Pat Ryan. Grattan is joined by third Jason Roach, second Darren Roach, lead Josh Barry, alternate Andy McCann and coach Daryell Nowlan.

In the other ninth-draw games, Kevin Koe and his Alberta foursome beat Jeff Currie of Northern Ontario 9-3, Jeff Stoughton of Manitoba got past Jamie Murphy of Nova Scotia 8-6 and Brad Gushue and his Newfoundland-Labrador unit stayed alive with an 8-5 win over Eddie MacKenzie of P.E.I.

The results left B.C. alone at 6-1, followed by Alberta at 5-1, Manitoba 5-2, Saskatchewan 4-1, Ontario and Quebec at 3-2, P.E.I. 3-3, Newfoundland-Labrador 3-4, Northwest Territories/Yukon 1-4, Northern Ontario 2-5, New Brunswick 1-5 and Nova Scotia 0-6.

Gushue, who has never won the Brier in 10 previous trips, kept alive his faint hopes with his bounce-back win after a gut-wrenching loss to Saskatchewan in the morning draw.

“Win the rest and hope,” he said when asked what his team has to do after four losses. “That fourth loss was a punch in the gut … you can’t afford to lose anymore. It’s a real long shot but at least it’s still a shot.”

Northern Ontario skip Jeff Currie, left, and Alberta skip Kevin Koe share a laugh during Tuesday's game.

Northern Ontario skip Jeff Currie, left, and Alberta skip Kevin Koe share a laugh during Tuesday’s game.

He was up 6-2 after scoring four in the fourth end but couldn’t relax until running P.E.I. out of rocks in the 10th.

“I found it challenging in that game to really stay focused,” Gushue admitted. “I think it will be easier tomorrow. We were still dwelling on the loss. Now that we have a win and a night off I think tomorrow morning will be easier to come back and be focused.”

In the 6:30 PT draw Ontario plays P.E.I, Quebec plays New Brunswick, Alberta meets Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia takes on Northwest Territories/Yukon.

All draws for the Tim Hortons Brier will be televised live on TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcasting partner of the Season of Champions.

Live scoring is available at: www.curling.ca/scoreboard/?e=19

To purchase tickets to the Tim Hortons Brier, presented by SecurTek, go to: www.curling.ca/2014brier-en/tickets/

The French version of this story will be available at www.curling.ca/2014brier-fr/ as soon as possible.

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