Shaun Meachem and Team Saskatchewan rebounded from an opening draw loss with a couple of wins on the second day of action at the Canadian Mixed Curling Championship in Swift Current.
Meachem, Kelly Schafer and Chris and Teejay Haichert from the Swift Current Curling Club got their first victory of the event with a 7-3 win over Tyler Smith and Prince Edward Island on Monday afternoon. After scoring two with hammer in the first, Saskatchewan carried on with four stolen points over the next three ends to take a 6-0 lead at the break. PEI started a comeback with two in the fifth and a steal of one in the sixth before the hometown rink picked up one more in the seventh to wrap up the scoring.
The nightcap saw a tight, high-scoring game between Saskatchewan and Team Quebec, skipped by Pierre-Luc Morissette. Meachem opened with three in the first end before Quebec responded with four in the second to take the lead, and then Saskatchewan would get four of their own in the third to go up 7-4. After trading singles in the fourth and fifth, Morissette made a game-saving angle raise against three Saskatchewan stones to score two in the sixth and followed up with a steal of two in the seventh to take a 9-8 lead coming home. Faced with another difficult decision in the eighth end, Meachem made a clutch draw to lie two with his first skip rock with hammer. Morissette then missed his final shot to give Saskatchewan a 10-9 victory and its second win of the day.
“That was a wild game,” Meachem said. “I said to the guys after the third, ‘I’m calling a 15-12 game here.' I’m thinking that’s the score. It’s more of a CFL game than a curling game.
“We had a really small target there,” Meachem added about his last shot. “There wasn’t a great spot to put that, but then there was only one spot to put it. It was really good if you made it, the guys swept it perfect, and Kelly called it good. That was a tough one and we were happy to make that.”
Saskatchewan is now at 2-1 after three games and in a tie with Nova Scotia for second in the Pool A standings, with the top four teams in each pool advancing to the championship round starting on Thursday.
“We definitely wanted to finish strong,” Meachem said. “Our goal coming in is to make that crossover and we know we’re going to be playing stronger every game… Splitting today wouldn’t have been great as we’re in a tough pool. There’s a lot of good teams and we still got a lot of curling to do ahead of us.”
Saskatchewan will have just one game on Tuesday afternoon against Terry Miller and Team Yukon.
A light morning draw on Monday had Jamie Koe and the Northwest Territories picking up a 5-4 win over Evan Van Amsterdam’s Alberta rink, and Team Nova Scotia defeating Quebec 8-7. In the afternoon, Manitoba routed Nunavut 12-1, BC beat Newfoundland and Labrador 10-2 and Yukon edged Northern Ontario 5-4. The evening draw had the Northwest Territories beating BC 6-5 to stay unbeaten in Pool B, Ontario beat Nova Scotia to hand Paul Flemming’s team their first loss, and Alberta picked up an 11-3 win over New Brunswick.
Ontario leads Pool A at 2-0 and have a game in hand over second-place Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia. Northern Ontario (1-1) is fourth ahead of Quebec and Yukon in a tie for fifth at 1-2.
In Pool B, Koe and the Northwest Territories are 3-0 with Kyle Kurz’s Manitoba rink in second at 2-0. Alberta is in third place at 2-1 and New Brunswick in fourth at 1-1, followed by BC at 1-2.
Draws on Tuesday are at 10:00am, 2:00pm and 6:00pm at the Swift Current Curling Club, and admission is free for the entire event.