The finalists have been set for the first of three modified triple-knockout sections at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts provincial women’s and the Tankard provincial men’s championships at the Cornwall Curling Club. It will be Cornwall clubmates Lauren Lenentine and Veronica Smith squaring off in the women’s, and Charlottetown’s Eddie MacKenzie and Phil Gorveatt playing in the men’s. Both “A” finals are scheduled for Friday at 2 pm.
Team Lenentine, who recently repeated as provincial junior women’s champions, won both their games by an 8-5 score on Thursday, over Montague’s Tammy Dewar rink, and Charlottetown’s Lisa Jackson squad. Jackson did not play tonight, with third Carolyn Coulson moving up to skip, and alternate Aleya Quilty playing lead.
Smith, last year’s PEI Scotties runner-up, stole five consecutive ends in a 9-0 blanking of defending champion Robyn MacPhee of Charlottetown in the opening draw. MacPhee came back with a 7-3 win in eight ends over Montague’s Tammy Dewar in the next draw.
Eddie MacKenzie throws a rock during practice, as Chris Gallant (left) and Sean Ledgerwood prepare to sweep. Teammate Josh Barry is in the background
Defending men’s champ MacKenzie recorded a 10-9 come-from-behind win over Charlottetown and Cornwall’s John Likely in his opener. Likely had a 7-2 lead after six ends, but MacKenzie came back with a pair of triples to lead 8-7. The teams traded deuces in the last two ends. MacKenzie then took on clubmate Tyler Harris, who was playing with only three players. Tied at three after six, MacKenzie took control with a four-point seventh end and a deuce in the eighth to bring the game to handshakes with a 9-3 score.
Gorveatt had a bye in the first draw, defeating Crapaud’s Alan Inman 6-4 in draw 2 to advance to the A final.
The second Friday draw is at 7 pm, with the “B” finals coming up at 9 am Saturday.
With the modified triple knockout format, the winning team from each section also gets to compete in the next section. If a team wins all three sections, they will win the event without a championship round. If a team wins two sections, they will advance to a championship game against the winner of the other section and will take the championship if they win the game. If the other team wins, there will be a second championship game, with the winner of that game going to the nationals. If there are three separate section winners, the team that played in the most section finals will earn a bye to the second championship game where they will face the winner of a game between the other two finalists.
The PEI Scotties winning team advances to the national Scotties Tournament of Hearts, January 27 to February 4 in Penticton BC, while the Tankard winner will play in the Tim Hortons Brier, March 3-11 in Regina SK.