2014 Scotties Tournament of Hearts

Sweeting wins two on opening day of the 2014 Scotties

B.C.’s Kesa Van Osch may be a Scotties rookie, but the team from Victoria gave Alberta’s Val Sweeting all she could handle in an 8-6 extra-end victory by the team from Alberta.

Val Sweeting (Photo CCA/Andrew Klaver)

Val Sweeting (Photo CCA/Andrew Klaver)

Sweeting, from the Saville Community Sports Centre in Edmonton, with team Joanne Courtney, Dana Ferguson, Rachelle Pidherny, alternate Renée Sonnenberg and coach Taina Smiley, had the young squad from B.C. chasing, but she still needed the extra end to secure the win.

“It was a good day,” said Sweeting, who now has a 2-0 record. “The team is playing well. We’ve got to sharpen up a little bit, but we’re getting better every game, and that’s what you want to do.”

In other games, Team Canada’s Rachel Homan showed the form that won her the Scotties title in 2013, defeating Manitoba’s Chelsea Carey 8-3.

Homan, backed by Emma Miskew, Alison Kreviazuk, Lisa Weagle, alternate Stephanie LeDrew and coach Earle Morris, had control through six ends but got into trouble in the seventh, giving up two. In the eighth, two precision raise takeouts by Miskew cleared Manitoba stones out of the four foot and set up Homan’s final shot for the win.

“It was a really tough port,” said Homan about Miskew’s shots. “She threw them really well. The whole team was playing well all end. Ali (Kreviazuk) made a thin double as well. It’s good to see, and we’ve just got to keep rolling.”

Quebec’s Allison Ross shook off a one-sided loss earlier in the day to give the hometown fans something to cheer about. Looking more sure of the ice, Ross held a 4-3 lead over Heather Strong in the 10th end, but a spectacular angle raise by the Newfoundland and Labrador skip gave Strong the 5-4 victory, a perfect end to a day in which she also won the Ford Hot Shots competition.

In the evening’s other game, Saskatchewan’s Stefanie Lawton defeated Allison Flaxey of Ontario 8-6. Saskatchewan had the edge through the first five ends, leading 5-2 at the fifth-end break, but Ontario just couldn’t close the gap.

The Scotties continues on Sunday with draws at 9 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. (all times EST).

TSN/RDS2, the official broadcaster of the CCA’s Season of Champions, will provide extensive coverage of the 2014 Scotties Tournament of Hearts, with 66 hours of live broadcasts scheduled.

The winner of the 2014 Scotties Tournament of Hearts will represent Canada at the Ford World Women’s Curling Championship, presented by Booster Juice, March 15 to 23 in Saint John, N.B.

The 2014 Scotties marks the 33rd year of Kruger Products Limited’s sponsorship of the Canadian women’s championship.

For ticket information, go to: www.curling.ca/2014scotties-en/tickets/

For schedule information, go to: www.curling.ca/2014scotties-en/draw-schedule/