Fitzner-LeBlanc a new Brier face for Nova Scotia

Ian Fitzner-LeBlanc and his Mayflower Curling Club team of third Stuart MacLean, second Kent Smith and lead Philip Crowell won the Nova Scotia Molson Men’s Tankard by defeating clubmate Doug MacKenzie, 6-3 in the Sunday final at his home club. Fitzner-LeBlanc, seeded number three of 16 teams, behind top-seeded Shawn Adams and two-seed Mark Dacey, thus completed the competition with a perfect 6-0 record. He’d won the A final, 8-5 over Jamie Murphy, then defeated MacKenzie, the B winner, 8-7 to advance to the final. Fitzner-LeBlanc is a former (2005) provincial junior champion, but will be making his Brier debut when the 81st Canadian men’s curling championship begins March 6 at the Metro Centre in Halifax, along with Smith and Crowell.   MacLean will be making his sixth trip (third as a provincial champion), after playing in 1985 and 1988, as second and third, respectively, for Thomas Hakansson.  He was also the fifth man for Shawn Adams in 2005, playing lead in several games, as well as being an alternate in 1993 and 1994 for skip Alan O’Leary’s team. Nova Scotia has won three Briers, the inaugural one in 1927 (Murray Macneill), followed in 1951 (Don Oyler) and in 2004 by Mark Dacey.