Ontario women, Manitoba men clinch berths in Juniors finals

Ontario (Rachel Homan of Ottawa) and Manitoba (Alex Forrest of Winnipeg) have clinched berths in their respective finals at the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors. Thursday evening, Homan claimed first place and a bye to Sunday’s final with a methodical 9-4 win over Nova Scotia (Tara LeGay of Bridgewater) to remain undefeated at 10-0. Ontario still has two games to play on Friday to complete the round robin…against Alberta and Prince Edward Island. “It’s pretty exciting getting right back to where we were last year,” said Homan, a 20-year-old Human Kinetics student at the University of Ottawa, who finished first in last year’s round robin only to lose the final to Manitoba’s Kaitlyn Lawes in Salmon Arm, British Columbia. “We’re just excited for Sunday, but we still have two more games (in the round robin) that we want to win and try and go undefeated this year. We weren’t last year so it’s another goal of ours.  We’ll just keep playing the way we are playing and try to build up to Sunday.” On the men’s side, Manitoba also clinched first place with a 10-1 record, after edging New Brunswick (Josh Barry of Rothesay), 6-5 and earning a bye to the final, although it still has one game remaining against Saskatchewan. In other men’s Draw 18 games, Saskatchewan (Braeden Moskowy of Regina) moved into a tie for second with idle defending champion  Prince Edward Island (Brett Gallant of Charlottetown) at 8-3, after an 8-4 win over Quebec (Kevin Rivest of Montreal). Meanwhile, Ontario (Jake Walker of Kitchener) lost to Nova Scotia (Scott Garnett of Halifax), 8-2 to fall to 7-3, with games remaining against Alberta and Prince Edward Island on Friday.  Nova Scotia improved to 7-4 with the win and still has an outside chance of making a tiebreaker. In the other game, Yukon (Thomas Scoffin of Whitehorse) defeated Northern Ontario (Christian Tolusso of Thunder Bay), 7-4. In other women’s games, Northern Ontario (Kendra Lilly of Sudbury) moved into a three-way tie for second at 8-3 with idle Alberta (Nadine Chyz of Calgary) and Saskatchewan (Trish Paulsen of Saskatoon), defeating Yukon (Sarah Koltun of Whitehorse), 8-6 while Saskatchewan defeated Quebec (Camille-Marie Lapierre of Otterburn Park), 10-7. In the other game, Manitoba (Breanne Meakin of Winnipeg) nipped New Brunswick (Jessica Daigle of Saint John), 6-5. The round robin concludes on Friday with draws at 8:00 am and 12:30 pm, after which the first place teams advance to the finals on Sunday, live on TSN.   After any required tiebreakers, the semi-finals will be played on Saturday, with the winners also advancing to their respective finals.