Monday, December 15, 2008

Larouche Wins Canada Cup Qualifier

Marie-France Larouche and her team from Quebec have capped a great weekend in Ottawa with a 6-4 victory over Amber Holland in the final of the John Shea Insurance Canada Cup Qualifier.

Larouche stole a deuce in the first end and scored two more in the fourth to take a 4-1 lead which she never relinquished.

Congratulations to Marie-France Larouche, Nancy Bélanger, Annie Lemay and
Joëlle Sabourin.

Congrats also to the defeated finalists: Amber Holland, Kim Schneider, Tammy Schneider and Heather Seeley.

Best holiday wishes to all my curling friends, and to both my readers too.

I'll be back in January with news from provincial playdowns.

Larouche And Holland Win Semifinals In Ottawa

Marie-France Larouche of Quebec and Amber Holland of Saskatchewan won their semifinals Monday afternoon and will meet in the final of the John Shea Insurance Canada Cup Qualifier in Ottawa.

Larouche scored two or more points every time she had the hammer, and limited Mary Anne Arsenault to singles every time Arsenault had last rock, en route to a convincing 9-4 victory.

It was the fifth straight win for the Larouche foursome, who are now 7-1 in the five-day event.

Holland had a tougher time against Sherry Middaugh, but wound up with a 7-5 win and a trip to the final.

It was the sixth win in a row for Team Holland, who are now 8-2.

The final goes this evening.

Winners Steal; Stealers Win

All the winners stole points in quarterfinal action Monday morning at the John Shea Insurance Canada Cup Qualifier in Ottawa. And all the teams that stole points won their games.

Mary Anne Arsenault stole four ends worth six points on the way to an 8-1 victory over Sherry Anderson.

Marie-France Larouche stole three ends worth four points and eliminated Jennifer Jones of Winnipeg by an 8-5 score.

Arsenault and Larouche will meet in one semifinal Monday afternoon.

Amber Holland only stole two points against Shannon Kleibrink, but she also scored heavily with last rock in winning 9-3.

Meanwhile, Sherry Middaugh stole a single against Cathy King, and scored three deuces ... yet the game was decided by a three-ender in the 9th. Make the final: Middaugh 10, King 7.

So it'll be Middaugh and Holland in the second semifinal, with the winner to face either Arsenault or Larouche.

We'll keep a close eye on the semifinals, where preventing steals will probably be a key to success.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Field Trimmed From 13 To 8 For Quarterfinals

The first round of playoffs -- the Round of 13 -- is finished at the John Shea Insurance Canada Cup Qualifier in Ottawa, and the winners are:

Marie-France Larouche, 9-4 over Barb Spencer; Sherry Anderson, in an extra end over Chantelle Eberle; Amber Holland, in an extra end over Renee Sonnenberg; Sherry Middaugh, 12-3 over Kristy Jenion; and Cathy King, 11-6 over Jolene McIvor.

Middaugh and King meet on Monday morning in one quarterfinal, while the other three Round of 13 winners face 'A' qualifiers: Holland plays Shannon Kleibrink; Anderson plays Mary Anne Arsenault; and Larouche plays Jennifer Jones.

Round of 13 Set To Go

The 'C' qualifiers are finished and the Round of 13 is ready to go. Amber Holland, Barb Spencer, Sherry Middaugh, and Renee Sonnenberg will join the six 'B' qualifiers in the first round of playoffs this evening, while the three 'A' qualifiers wait for the quarterfinals to begin.

Holland won a 6-3 final against Cheryl Bernard and will face Renee Sonnenberg in the next round. Sonnenberg defeated Chantal Osborne of Quebec, 10-4, in their qualifying game.

Spencer took a 9-6 decision against Heather Strong of Newfoundland, and will play Marie-France Larouche.

Sherry Middaugh beat Cindy Ricci, 7-4, in the other 'C' qualifier and she will play Kristy Jenion of Winnipeg.

Chantelle Eberle faces Sherry Anderson in a matchup of 'B' qualifiers, while the other two 'B' qualifiers, Jolene McIvor and Cathy King, meet in the other match of the draw.

The five winners will play quarterfinals on Monday morning, as will the three 'A' qualifiers, Mary Anne Arsenault, Jennifer Jones and Shannon Kleibrink.

Spencer Steals One Clean Away

Barb Spencer of Winnipeg scored on four consecutive ends Sunday morning -- a total of five points, four of them stolen -- and held on for a 5-4 victory against Michelle Englot and her team from Regina. The loss dropped Team Englot's record to 3-3 and knocked them out of the event. Unfortunately, you can't win 'em all.

Spencer remains alive in the 'C' event, and can reach the round of ... um ... thirteen ... with a win against Heather Strong on Sunday afternoon.

The 'B' event is now finished, and six once-beaten teams have claimed their spots in the next round. They are: Jolene McIvor, Marie-France Larouche, Sherry Anderson, Kristy Jenion, Cathy King and Chantelle Eberle.

Four qualifiers will emerge from the 'C' event, and they will join these six teams in the first round of playoff games Sunday night.

The winners of these five games will join the three 'A' event qualifiers -- Mary Anne Arsenault, Jennifer Jones and Shannon Kleibrink -- in Monday morning's quarterfinals.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Englot Wins, Stays In ...

Michelle Englot and her team from Regina got off to a good start against Manitoba's Kerri Flett, scoring three in the second end and stealing two more in the third to establish a 5-2 lead. Flett came back to score a deuce in the fourth but never got any closer, and Englot emerged on the sunny side of a 9-6 final.

Englot remains in contention, in the 'C' event, and will face Winnipeg's Barb Spencer Sunday morning.

Englot Loses A Close One

Saturday morning's game between Michelle Englot and Chantelle Eberle was just too much! Eberle started out with a single and a steal, and led by 3-1 after four ends. Englot scrambled back to tie it at 4-4 after seven, and led 6-5 after nine. But Eberle had last rock in the tenth, and she took advantage, scoring a deuce for a 7-6 win.

Englot, 2-2, now falls to the 'C' event and must win all her remaining games, beginning with Manitoba's Kerri Flett on Saturday night.

The 'A' event is finished, and three teams -- Mary Anne Arsenault, Jennifer Jones and Shannon Kleibrink -- have qualified for the quarterfinals. I'll try to keep you posted.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Englot Wins, Stays In The 'B'

Michelle Englot and her team from Regina jumped out to an early lead and knocked off Carrie Lindner of Toronto, 7-5, to run their record to 2-1 and remain in the 'B' event heading into Saturday's games.

Next up for Englot is another Regina team, skipped by Chantelle Eberle. That game will be played on Saturday morning, and I will be back with more news.

Five-Spot Too Much For Englot

On Friday morning, Regina's Jolene McIvor cracked open a tight game with a five-spot in the eighth end, sending Michelle Englot to the 'B' event of the John Shea Insurance Canada Cup Qualifier in Ottawa.

Englot, now 1-1, will face on Carrie Lindner of Toronto on Friday evening.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Englot Starts Well In Ottawa

Team Englot are in Ottawa this weekend for the biggest event on their World Curling Tour schedule, where they're one of forty-four teams playing for a spot in the Canada Cup.

They started well Thursday night, beating Tracy Horgan of Sudbury, 8-5. The game was close until Englot stole deuces in both the sixth and seventh ends to take an 8-3 lead. They're playing 10 end games here (rather than 8 as in the previous events), but Horgan was too far behind to catch up.

So the Englot foursome remain in the 'A' event, where they will meet Regina's Jolene McIvor on Friday morning.

They'll play again Friday evening, against an opponent to be determined. And I will try to keep you posted.