Tuesday, August 16, 2022
Home New Release Einarson misses first chance at securing playoff berth, has to settle for...

Einarson misses first chance at securing playoff berth, has to settle for tiebreaker

Kerri Einarson needed a win Friday afternoon to book her playoff ticket at Canada’s Olympic curling trials. A loss to Kelsey Rocque not only hurt her chances of making the three-team cut, it also gave two other teams hope.

Rocque played spoiler in the women’s round-robin finale by posting an 8-4 victory over Einarson — the reigning national women’s champion — at SaskTel Centre.

The result left Einarson (4-4) in a three-team tiebreaker on Saturday. A win would have given her a direct path to the semifinal against Jennifer Jones but now Einarson will have to win two more games to get there.

“We never do anything the easy way,” Einarson said. “We’ve got to just keep grinding and keep fighting out there.”

Jones and top-seeded Tracy Fleury locked up playoff spots earlier in the competition. Fleury (8-0) closed round-robin play with a 7-6 win over Jones in what was essentially a warmup game for the unbeaten skip ahead of Sunday’s final.

Story continues below advertisement

Einarson will first play Casey Scheidegger, who beat Rachel Homan 8-6. The winner of that game Saturday morning will play Krista McCarville in the afternoon for the right to meet Jones in the evening.

Read more:
17 Manitoba teams in running for Olympic curling berths in revamped qualification

Scheidegger admitted she did some scoreboard-watching on the next sheet during her game.

“I can’t believe it, I’m very excited,” she said. “It’s thrilling, really. I have to thank our friends from Alberta, Kelsey Rocque, for helping us out there. So that was very kind of them.”

McCarville, who was idle Friday and watched the draw with her teammates in the stands, has the higher tiebreaker seed based on cumulative last stone draw results.

“Today has been a day of emotions as we had no control of what could happen … we are super excited and grateful to have another opportunity,” McCarville said in a text message.

Rocque, who was playing for pride, put the pressure on late and made Einarson try some unlikely in-off attempts to score. Einarson had a chance for four points in the eighth but was a shade thick with her final throw, giving up a steal of one.

She flashed an in-off in the ninth and Rocque made a nice triple-takeout in the 10th end that essentially ended it.

Story continues below advertisement

“We wanted to come out and finish strong, play well and shake up the standings a bit, as much as we could,” Rocque said. “So I think we did our job and we’re happy with how we ended the week.”

Despite her loss, Jones (5-3) still secured the second seed after Einarson’s defeat. The semifinal winner will meet Fleury on Sunday morning for the right to wear the Maple Leaf at the Feb. 4-20 Winter Olympics in Beijing.

Laura Walker (3-5) had a chance to create a four-team tiebreaker but she dropped a 10-9 decision to Jacqueline Harrison (3-5) in an extra end.

Rocque was also 3-5 while Homan, who represented Canada at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games but missed the podium, finished last in the nine-team field at 2-6.

The men’s playoff picture was also unsettled entering the evening draw at SaskTel Centre.

Brad Gushue and Brad Jacobs (both 6-1) entered play knowing they had made the three-team cut but with seeding still up in the air.

Gushue was off for the morning draw while Jacobs topped Mike McEwen 9-5. And McEwen was knocked out of playoff contention later in the day after a victory by Kevin Koe in the late draw.

Koe (5-2) moved into third place with an 8-7 victory over Jason Gunnlaugson. Koe is hoping to get back to the Winter Games after missing the podium in Pyeongchang.

Story continues below advertisement

In the other morning games, Brendan Bottcher defeated Epping 10-6 and Matt Dunstone downed Tanner Horgan 8-4.

Read more:
Koe wins against Bottcher, Einarson falls to Duncan at Grand Slam of Curling’s National event

With two tiebreakers in the women’s draw, organizers were forced to change Saturday’s schedule. With the women’s semifinal being pushed back to Saturday evening, it originally meant both semifinals would have to played at the same time.

Instead the men’s semifinal will now be played Saturday afternoon at 2:00 PM alongside the second women’s tiebreaker game. The women’s semifinal is scheduled for 7:00 PM.

Story continues below advertisement


Click to play video: 'Team Einarson navigating COVID-19 curling season'







Team Einarson navigating COVID-19 curling season


Team Einarson navigating COVID-19 curling season – Oct 20, 2020

© 2021 The Canadian Press

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

Inflation chipping away at your back-to-school budget? Here’s how to save

Balancing the budget for back-to-school shopping is more difficult for parents this year as rampant inflation threatens piggy banks nationwide. More than a third of...

Granny does Q&A from beyond the grave after AI was trained to answer for her

Marina Smith MBE, who died in June aged 87, speaks to mourners at her own funeral (Credit: Storyfile)A woman who died in June has...

How to get the Android 13 update on your Pixel right away

Google announced on August 15th, 2022, that it would begin rolling out the Android 13 update to its portfolio of Pixel devices. As is...

Windows 11’s next big update arrives next month with Start menu folders, new gestures, and more

Microsoft is planning to release its next big Windows 11 update, version 22H2, on September 20th. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge...