Manitoba, Northern Ontario score key wins at the Scotties

SYDNEY, N.S. – Manitoba and Northern Ontario posted “must-have” victories at the 2019 Scotties Tournament of Hearts Monday afternoon, while Alberta and Ontario also produced wins to remain the only unbeaten teams in Pool A.

Krista McCarville and Team Northern Ontario (2-2, Thunder Bay) scored four in the seventh end to bust open a tight game against a determined Team Nunavut (1-3, Iqaluit) skipped by Jenine Bodner.

“After our struggles (Sunday) we wanted to come out, feel the ice, learn the ice for the next few games. We knew we had to have more fire inside,” said McCarville, who would finish with a 9-4 victory. “We want to show that we can make any shot, so we knew we had to come out and learn the ice and make some better shots so we are confident in ourselves.”

Tracy Fleury of Team Manitoba (2-2, East St. Paul) had a more difficult time before finding her team found its game in the final half to subdue Jill Brothers and Team Nova Scotia (0-4, Halifax) 9-4.

“We felt comfortable out there, started off strong and continued to build throughout the game,” said Team Manitoba lead Kristin MacCuish. “This game definitely helps build momentum going into Tuesday and Wednesday, which will be some tough games.

Rachel Homan and Team Ontario (4-0, Ottawa), three-time Scotties champions, had an easy time of it with a 12-2 win over the youthful Team Quebec (0-4, Saint-Romuald) skipped by Gabrielle Lavoie.

Chelsea Carey of Team Alberta (4-0, Calgary), meanwhile, made her last-rock hit-and-stick in an extra end to nip Sarah Wark of Team British Columbia (3-1, Abbotsford) 9-8 to win the battle between the two other unbeaten teams in Pool A.

The wins by Team Manitoba and Team Northern Ontario kept them in the chase to be among the four teams that will advance out of the pool and into the Championship Round.

“We know we have some tough ones ahead so minimizing our number of losses is really important right now,” said Fleury.

Alberta’s Sarah Wilkes had reason to be smiling on Monday after another victory. (Photo, Curling Canada/Andrew Klaver)

McCarville, backed by third Kendra Lilly, second Jen Gates, lead Sarah Potts, alternate Lorraine Lang and coach Rick Lang, opened her game with three consecutive singles, then added two in the fifth before cracking the decisive four-ender.

“We really wanted to be sharp, to make every single shot, we wanted to learn the ice, we wanted to learn the draw weight really well, we just wanted to feel confident again,” said McCarville, playing in her seventh Scotties. “We definitely feel we shot better, we hit the broom better and we knew draw weight so that’s what we wanted to do.”

The 2019 Scotties Tournament of Hearts continues with tonight’s Draw 8 at 7:30 p.m. AST.

Live scoring, standings and statistics for the 2019 Scotties Tournament of Hearts are available at www.curling.ca/scoreboard/

TSN and RDS2 (streamed on ESPN3 in the United States) will provide complete coverage of the 2019 Scotties Tournament of Hearts. CLICK HERE for the complete schedule.

For ticket information for the 2019 Scotties Tournament of Hearts, go to www.curling.ca/2019scotties/tickets/

This story will be available in French as soon as possible at www.curling.ca/2019scotties/category/nouvelles/?lang=fr