Team Canada played two games and gave up only a single point on the final day of round-robin competition at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway, which means tomorrow they’re off to the quarterfinals as the only undefeated team.
“It feels good to come out of the round robin with no losses yet, but now it’s sudden death, so we just have to stay focused and make sure we’re throwing the rock well as we head into playoffs,” said skip Mary Fay after the game.
Fay (Chester, N.S.), third Tyler Tardi, (Surrey, B.C.), second Karlee Burgess (Brookfield, N.S.), lead Sterling Middleton (Fort St. John, B.C.), with coach Helen Radford, powered through their afternoon game against Republic of Korea, stealing all six points in a 6-0 win.
In the evening game, Canada scored five with hammer in the first end, then went on to steal the next three ends in a 13-1 victory over the young team from Brazil, who made history on Monday by scoring the first-ever point for a Brazilian curling team in Olympic competition. (And in the spirit of sportsmanship emphasized by the Youth Olympics movement, the point scored today by Brazil’s skip Elian Sabra Rocha on an open hit in the fifth end was greeted with congratulations by the Canadians, too.)
With a first-place finish in Group B, Canada heads into quarter-finals against either Italy or Turkey, who will play a tie-breaker on Tuesday morning to determine fourth place in Group A.
Fay knows that the pressure will increase with the playoffs, but she and her teammates are determined to enjoy every minute of their experience on the international stage in Lillehammer.
“I think we’ll be focused on one shot at a time, and supporting our teammates and being positive, and just really having fun,” she said. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, our one and only Youth Olympics, so we want to enjoy every end, and every shot, and try not to get ahead of ourselves, because it might be our last game. You want to make sure you leave it all on the ice and have a lot of fun and enjoy the experience.”
Quarter-finals take place on Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. EST, with semifinals at 12 p.m. EST.
The 16 teams are split into two pools of eight. The top four teams in each pool will qualify for the playoffs, with the quarter-finals and semifinals scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 16, and the gold- and bronze-medal games on Wednesday, Feb. 17, at 3 a.m. EST.
Live scoring, pictures, team lineups and the event schedule are available at www.worldcurling.org/yog2016
Follow live shot-by-shot action on Curling Geek.
Daily highlight packages will be available online at http://www.cbc.ca/sports/olympics/video.
Other video content from Lillehammer will be available at the Games’ Youtube channel, www.youtube.com/user/lillehammer2016, as well as at the Youth Olympics’ Youtube channel, www.youtube.com/user/YouthOlympics.
For more information about the Youth Olympics, click here.