Team Carey continues roll, Team Koe clinches playoffs at Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings

OTTAWA – Chelsea Carey’s team from Calgary jolted the 2017 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings by knocking off the 2014 Olympic women’s curling gold-medallist Jennifer Jones of Winnipeg 7-5 in a battle of the undefeated. With the win, Team Carey is 5-0 in the nine-team round robin while Jones dropped to 5-1. The victory means her team of third Cathy Overton-Clapham, second Jocelyn Peterman, lead Laine Peters and coach Helen Radford holds the standings tiebreaker over both Jones and Rachel Homan (4-1), having beaten the Ottawa skip in the opening draw. “Both teams (Jones and Homan) are going to be there at the end of the week so if you end up tied with them you’ve got that one up,” said Carey, who finishes the round robin with Thursday against Julie Tippin of Toronto (1-4) and Friday versus Krista McCarville (2-2) of Thunder Bay, Ont., and Winnipeg’s Michelle Englot (1-4). That was a big win for us, but we’ve still got a couple of games to go yet so we’ll enjoy this for about five minutes and then we’ll get right back at it.” Carey got a steal of three in the fifth when Jones’s draw came up light and crashed out front to go ahead 5-2. She stole two more in the sixth when again Jones was light and actually bumped a Carey rock up for second shot to go ahead 7-2. “I don’t know that it was necessarily as well-played a game as either team would’ve liked, but we’ll take it,” said Carey. “At the end of the week it doesn’t matter. Both teams fought ice a little bit but we took advantage of a few misses and got some rocks in some good spots and played pretty well from there.” The loss was the first for Jones in 20 games. She came into the event having gone undefeated in 14 games by winning two Grand Slams, and added five more victories before Wednesday’s loss. She said she couldn’t quite figure out the line to call for her shots. “That will have to be better if we’re to make the playoffs, and I’ll figure it out,” said Jones. “I just have to take a little bit more ice and believe the ice is curling the way it is.” In other afternoon draw women’s action, Englot defeated Tippin 9-6. Calgary’s Kevin Koe, meanwhile, downed John Epping of Toronto 6-4 to remain the only undefeated men’s team at 6-0. Team Koe actually had a 6-0 lead after six ends, but gave up two in the seventh and steals in the eighth and nine ends to make the score look closer than it was. “We got off to a good start, that was the key. We were up 6-0 and just played a little defensive. We didn’t want to take any risks,” said Koe, who clinched a playoff spot with the win and Brad Jacobs’ 9-3 loss to Edmonton’s Brendan Bottcher. A win against either John Morris of Vernon, B.C., Thursday or 2017 world men’s champion Brad Gushue of St. John’s on Friday will assure him of a spot in the final on Sunday and avoiding having to play the semifinal.

Cathy Overton-Clapham, left, talks over strategy with Chelsea Carey. (Photo, Curling Canada/Michael Burns)

“If you’re in the semi you’re playing one of the heavyweights, so you don’t want to be there. If we can pull it off (clinching a spot in the final) it will be reassuring,” said Koe. Bottcher got back on track by downing Jacobs’s team from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., 9-3 in eight ends. “We’ve been up early and have had a hard time closing, so it was really nice today to have a good start again but to also close it out,” said Bottcher. “All the teams are so close. Every win you can get is so important. And really anyone can beat anyone. So every game we play that’s the attitude we’ve got to have.” Both Bottcher and Jacobs are 2-3. “I would say there were a lot of well-thrown rocks out there by our team and a huge lack of results, and it’s hard to put your finger on why,” said Jacobs. The 2017 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings continues with another draw today at 7 p.m. and draws Thursday at 9 a.m., 2 and 7 p.m. (all times EST). Live scoring, standings and statistics for the 2017 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings are available at TSN/TSN2 and RDS2 will provide complete coverage of the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings. CLICK HERE for the complete schedule For ticket information for the 2017 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings, CLICK HERE. This story will be posted in French as soon as possible at