Win over P.E.I. clinches first place
SUMMERSIDE – Colleen Pinkney came into the 2013 Canadian senior curling championships hoping to duplicate her rink’s 2009 success at the Silver Fox Curling and Yacht Club, and so far it’s been basically a carbon-copy performance.
Topics : Truro Curling Club , Nova Scotia , Summerside , Northwest Territories
Pinkney and her teammates – third stone Wendy Currie, second stone Shelley MacNutt and lead Susan Creelman – clinched first place in the round robin on Wednesday afternoon.
Pinkney’s 11-8 win over Nola Murphy’s P.E.I. representative from Summerside improved the Truro Curling Club rink’s record to 9-0 (won-lost).
“That’s good news, I wasn’t sure about that,” commented Pinkney after being informed her win against P.E.I. guaranteed a first-place finish. “We will have a day where we can get a little rested, and be ready for Sunday.”
The first-place teams after the round robin in both men and women’s play earn a bye directly into Sunday’s championship games. The second- and third-place teams will play in the semifinals on Saturday.
In Thursday night’s late draw, Pinkney defeated the Northwest Territories’ Ann McKellar-Gillis 13-5 to make it 10 straight wins.
In 2009, Pinkney, Currie, second stone Karen Hennigar and Creelman went 10-1 in the round robin to earn a bye to the final, where they defeated British Columbia’s Kathy Smiley 6-4. They went on to win the 2010 world senior championship in Russia.
Another similarity for Pinkney and Co. compared to four years ago is having to deal with the flu. Pinkney and MacNutt were both feeling less than 100 per cent versus P.E.I.
“That’s OK, because in 2009 I was sick too,” added Pinkney. “I’m hoping it’s a good sign and not a bad one.”
The loss dropped P.E.I.’s record to 1-8, but Murphy, third stone Donna Arsenault, second stone Elspeth Carmody and lead Laurie Tirone gave the 2009 Canadian senior champions all they could handle. P.E.I. led 4-2 after three ends, and went into the fifth-end break up 5-4.
Nova Scotia countered with back-to-back deuces in the sixth and seventh ends to take an 8-5 lead. P.E.I. got one back with hammer in the eighth, and then stole two in nine to tie the score 8-8. Nova Scotia closed out the win by counting three in the final end.
“We had an awesome game,” said Murphy. “The girls played really well. We tried to stay focused and take it one rock at a time.”
With Nova Scotia having the hammer in the 10th end, P.E.I. tried to generate a steal.
“My objective was to put up the centre-line guards, at least one or two, and come around and steal,” said Murphy. “You have to wait before coming into the house.
“If you come into the house (too early) they are going to either freeze to it or take it out early. My first (stone) came around but came up just a little short. I took a little more ice (on second stone) and tried to throw a little more weight and just missed it by an inch. That’s curling, but we’re very, very pleased to have such a close game against the top team.”
Pinkney praised the P.E.I. team’s performance.
“P.E.I. was curling great, and making a ton of shots,” said Pinkney. “Nola handled the ice very well.
“My front end was incredible. Susan set us up end after end, and Shelley was great. Even though I personally struggled they curled well enough.”
Pinkney and her rink have received strong support from both back home and from Nova Scotians attending games in Summerside.
“We’ve had some come, some go home and we have some staying and making it a holiday,” said Pinkney just as a Nova Scotia supporter walked by. “We are really lucky to have the support.”
And there’s a good chance there will be a strong contingent of Truro curling fans in attendance for the final.
“We have a lot of flags for them if they do arrive,” added Pinkney.