Jones wins, Sweeting loses, to leave both at 3-1 at Olympic Curling Trials
Skip Brad Jacobs calls to his sweepers E.J. Harnden and Ryan Harnden in draw 6 against Glenn Howard at the 2013 Roar Of The Rings championship in Winnipeg, Tuesday, December 3, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods
Published Tuesday, December 3, 2013 1:56PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, December 3, 2013 7:51PM EST
WINNIPEG -- Two teams shared the top of the standings on both the men's and women's sides at the Canadian Olympic Curling trials Tuesday.
Jennifer Jones and Val Sweeting sat at 3-1 on the women's side while Brad Jacobs and Kevin Martin remained unbeaten with three wins apiece going into the men's late draw Tuesday.
Sweeting is technically in the lead among the women, thanks to handing Jones her only loss so far. But at this point, it's what happens next that all 16 teams know matters most.
"It will be the turning point Wednesday, Thursday, obviously," said Heather Nedohin, who handed Sweeting her first loss with a last rock draw to win a tight game 6-5.
"I don't think anyone at the trials ever has done this undefeated," said Sweeting.
"I thought we just got outplayed."
Both teams curl out of the Saville Community Sports Centre in Edmonton.
Nedohin sits in a five-team logjam below the leaders at 2-2 with Renee Sonnenberg alone at 1-3, a spot unlikely to give her a shot at moving on.
"Three losses is going to be tough to make it in," said the skip from Grande Prairie, Alta.
"If we can finish above .500 that's a feather in our hat too."
Jones dominated Sonnenberg from start to finish Tuesday shaking hands at 7-2 after the eighth. It was a solid comeback after Monday night's 9-6 loss to Sweeting, which included a disastrous four in the seventh end.
"I don't know if we gave it away, we just made too many mistakes so it wasn't our best effort," said Jones.
"I thought we bounced back as well as could have today."
Saskatoon's Stefanie Lawton earned her second win with a 7-5 decision over Winnipeg's Chelsea Carey and in an all-Ontario game. Sherry Middaugh bowed 6-5 to Rachel Homan in an extra end.
On the men's side, only Brier champion Jacobs and Olympic gold medallist Martin remained undefeated after Tuesday morning's draw.
Martin needed a difficult double with his final rock of the 10th end to edge Kevin Koe 6-5. He said Koe probably should have won the game, if not for a steal in the eighth end that gave the Olympic gold medal winner a chance to come back.
Koe was a little deep on his draw attempt.
"Other than that, they won the game, they played better than us, they just missed one shot and we stole two" said Martin.
"If he gets one there. . . he would have been three up playing nine and you don't beat that team three up playing nine."
Despite his 3-0 record, Martin had a prediction.
"Nobody's going through undefeated."
Jacobs also improved to 3-0 with a 6-5 win over Glenn Howard in Draw 6. Howard made it close with a point in the ninth end and a steal of another in the 10th, but couldn't recover from an early deficit.
John Morris sits alone in second at 2-1 after lost his first, falling 7-5 to Winnipeg's Mike McEwen, who put the game away with three in the eighth end. It was a must-win game for McEwen, who joins four others at 1-2, with 5-2 considered the only safe place to be at the end of the week when the playoffs begin.
"Oh big time, 1-2 is not where you want to be," said Howard. "I'd like to run the table now. Maybe 4-3 might get in but I don't want to count on that."
Another local favourite, Jeff Stoughton, also earned his first win of the event, edging John Epping 4-3.
Koe's loss to Martin left him at 0-3, which most skips agree is a long shot to make the playoffs even if he wins his final four.
Martin says the pressure is big and it isn't going to get easier.
"It's the same pressure day after day. Whoever does come out of this will be ready."