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Manitoba men, Ontario women 5-0 at Juniors

While Ontario’s Rachel Homan is deservedly generating a lot of ink as the undefeated leader on the women’s side, there’s another team from Ontario that is doing almost as well at the 2010 M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors.

That’s the Jake Walker team from Kitchener.  After a tough extra end 5-4 loss to leader Manitoba this morning, the Walker foursome rebounded with an 8-6 win over New Brunswick (Josh Barry of Rothesay) in Monday evening’s Draw 9 to move into a three-way tie for second, along with idle Saskatchewan (Braeden Moskowy of Regina) and Alberta (Brendan Bottcher of Edmonton), all with 4-1 records.

After New Brunswick opened with a deuce, Ontario took command with a four-spot in the third end and never trailed after that.

“That was a good end.  We all made our shots in that end, thankfully,” recalled Walker.  “We actually had a shot for five, but I decided not to do it, and just draw for four because there was a risk to it.  I figured either take four or hit for five and risk giving up one, so I took the four.  We didn’t play our best, though.”

Still, a win is a win.

In this morning’s game, Ontario had a chance for a winning deuce in the 10th end but Walker’s final stone hit and rolled too far.  Thus, Ontario was only able to count one to force the extra frame, before suffering its first defeat.

“It could have gone either way.  It was a good game,” continued Walker, a 20-year-old Electrical Engineering student at the University of Waterloo.   “We played well.  We were pretty confident (coming here).  My vice (Craig Van Ymeren) and second (Geoff Chambers) made the final before (losing to Quebec’s William Dion in 2008).  That certainly helps me – their experience.  It helps a lot. So far, so good.”

The men’s leader is still undefeated Manitoba (Alex Forrest of Winnipeg), which remained perfect at 5-0 with a 9-6 win over Newfoundland and Labrador (Kelly Schuh of St. John’s).

In other games, Prince Edward Island (Brett Gallant of Charlottetown) won its third straight, 7-4 over Quebec (Kevin Rivest of Montreal) to move into fifth place at 4-2, while Nova Scotia (Scott Garnett of Halifax) walloped Yukon (Thomas Scoffin of Whitehorse), 13-3.

In women’s, the Homan squad from Ottawa rolled on, an 8-4 winner over New Brunswick (Jessica Daigle of Saint John) to improve to 5-0.  Tied for second with 4-1 marks are Northern Ontario (Kendra Lilly of Sudbury) and Saskatchewan (Trish Paulsen of Saskatoon), both of whom enjoyed byes.

Manitoba (Breanne Meakin of Winnipeg) moved into a three-way tie for fourth with British Columbia (Dailene Sivertson of Victoria) and Alberta (Nadine Chyz of Calgary), all at 3-2, after outshooting Newfoundland and Labrador (Jen Cunningham of  St. John’s), 9-6.

Yukon (Sarah Koltun of Whitehorse) took three in the 10th to upend Nova Scotia (Tara LeGay of Bridgewater), 6-4 while Prince Edward Island (Sarah Fullerton of Cornwall) was an 8-4 winner over Quebec (Camille-Marie Lapierre of Otterburn Park).

The round robin continues on Tuesday with draws at 10:00 am, 2:30 pm and 7:00 pm ET.