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Canada still working towards playoff berths at World Juniors

As the end of the round robin approaches, Team Canada’s Kristen Streifel and Tyler Tardi still need a few more wins to lock up a spot in the playoffs of the 2017 World Junior Curling Championships in Gangneung, South Korea.

Team Canada skip Kristen Streifel (WCF/Richard Gray photo)

Streifel and her Edmonton-based team of vice-skip Chantele Broderson, second Kate Goodhelpsen, lead Brenna Bilassy, alternate Karlee Burgess and coach Amanda Dawn St. Laurent fell 8-5 to Scotland’s Sophie Jackson, giving up four points in the fourth and not being able to climb back.

“It was a really tough game,” said Streifel. “We had some unfortunate breaks and some really close shots. All we can do is focus on tomorrow now I guess. I don’t think it was a horrible game, we stayed really close. We did have our chances, just had some bad angles and misses.”

With the loss, Canada slips to fourth place in the standings – still in reach of making the playoffs, depending on the outcome of the final round robin game against USA’s Annmarie Dubberstein on Thursday.

“A clean slate tomorrow,” said Streifel. “And all we do is go out there and give it our all and see where we fall at the end of the round robin and go from there.”

In the men’s competition, Tyler Tardi and his B.C. team from Langley/New Westminster (vice-skip Sterling Middleton, second Jordan Tardi, lead Nick Meister, alternate Nicholas Rabl, coach Paul Tardi) had their hands full against a very determined Ugurcan Karagoz from Turkey, who was looking for his first win in the round robin.

“You would have never guessed that those guys were 0-6 right now,” said Tardi. “They were playing really good considering their record – hat’s off to them.”

“This is beyond stressful,” said the Canadian skip, who needs one more win to clinch a playoff spot. “They were really trying hard to win that game. They were playing unreal, so huge credit to them.”

Team Canada skip Tyler Tardi (WCF/Richard Gray photo)

Leading 5-4 after seven ends, Canada stole one in eight and put the game away with a deuce in ten.

“We struggled a little bit – that’s how curling is sometimes – but we managed to squeak through and we’re happy with that,” said Tardi about grinding out the win. “I feel a mixture of every emotion. I’m a little stressed, a little relieved, but happy. I’m just trying to lower my heart-rate right now.”

On the final day of the round-robin, both Canadian games will be broadcast by the World Curling Federation. The women play USA (12 a.m. EST) and the men will face Scotland’s Cameron Bryce (5 a.m. EST), and the games can be seen on the World Curling Federation’s Youtube channel, www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV.

Event information, including news and live scoring, are available at the event website, www.worldcurling.org/wjcc2017.