Olympic champs bounce back at Home Hardware Canada Cup

Olympic champions Brad Jacobs and Jennifer Jones shook off earlier losses Wednesday to bounce back with wins in the third draw of the Home Hardware Canada Cup, presented by Meridian Manufacturing.  

Jacobs and his Sault Ste. Marie team beat Jim Cotter of Vernon, B.C., 8-4 while Jones and her Winnipeg foursome needed a last-rock shot to edge Alli Flaxey of Listowel, Ont., 9-8. The wins moved Jacobs and Jones to 1-1 after the first day.

Jacobs lost 8-4 to Kevin Koe of Calgary in the morning while Jones had dropped a 9-5 decision to Heather Nedohin of Sherwood Park, Alta., in the afternoon draw. “We were a completely different team tonight than we were this morning, way more energy, way more effort, way more focus. It was like night and day,” Jacobs said of his team of third Ryan Fry, second E.J. Harnden and lead Ryan Harnden.
Brad Jacobs guides his sweepers during Wednesday night's win. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Brad Jacobs guides his sweepers during Wednesday night’s win. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

“I really feel like we weren’t ready to play this morning. We flew here yesterday, checked into the hotel, straight to practice, straight to a banquet, straight to bed, up at 6 a.m. and you have to curl. It felt real rushed, it didn’t feel like we were at an event yet. “Our minds weren’t there. But we had all day to kind of have a chat, rest, recoup and we came out strong.” They scored two in the second end, traded singles with Cotter and then stole three in the fifth to take control “We played a real good end, they missed quite a few of their shots and Jim had a tough draw for one and was a little heavy,” Jacobs explained. “It felt good because the end before we had a good deuce going and we were forced to one. Getting the three opens the game wide up, we can start peeling and it makes it tough on them.”
Team Flaxey vice-skip Katie Cottrill guides her sweepers, with Jennifer Jones, top left, and Kaitlyn Lawes looking on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

Team Flaxey vice-skip Katie Cottrill guides her sweepers, with Jennifer Jones, top left, and Kaitlyn Lawes looking on. (Photo, CCA/Michael Burns)

In the other third draw results, Val Sweeting of Edmonton scored deuces in the fourth and sixth ends en route to an 8-2 win over Sherry Anderson of Saskatoon, Mike McEwen of Winnipeg crushed Koe 8-2, and Glenn Howard of Penetanguishene, Ont., beat Brad Gushue of St. John’s, N.L., 10-4. Jones, third Kaitlyn Lawes, second Jill Officer and lead Dawn McEwen scored three in the first but gave up two in the second. They got one in the third but surrendered four in the fourth. The teams traded singles in the fifth and sixth before Jones got a deuce in the eighth but gave up a single in the ninth that tied the game 8-8. “We had a bit of a shaky game, little bit of ups and downs but all you want is a shot to win and we had it and made it,” Jones said of her final shot. “We’re 1-1 going into tomorrow, which is great. We were unfortunate to give up that four. We maybe called a shot we won’t in the future. But we fought back.” The results left Howard and McEwen atop the men’s standings at 2-0 followed by Koe, Jacobs and Morris at 1-1. Cotter and Gushue are 0-2. On the women’s side Nedohin and Rachel Homan of Ottawa are at 2-0, Sweeting, Anderson and Jones are 1-1 and Sherry Middaugh and Flaxey are 0-2. The Home Hardware Canada Cup continues today with draws at 8:30 a.m., 1:30 and 6:30 p.m. (all times Mountain). TSN/TSN2 and RDS2 will provide complete coverage of the Home Hardware Canada Cup. Click here for the broadcast schedule. The Home Hardware Canada Cup format calls for the men’s and women’s teams to play a three-day round robin, with the first-place teams advancing to their respective finals on Sunday, while the second- and third-place teams meet in semi-finals on Saturday, after any required tiebreakers, to determine the other finalists. For ticket information for the 2014 Home Hardware Canada Cup, go to www.curling.ca/2014canadacup-en/tickets/.