MCDONALD, WALTER WIN MANITOBA’S WORLD JUNIOR QUALIFIERS

(11PM: Sunday, Nov. 7) Jordan McDonald and his team (Reece Hamm, Elias Huminicki, Alexandre Fontaine, Coach Blaine Malo) and the Meghan Walter foursome (Lane Prokopowich, Katie McKenzie, Mackenzie Elias, Coach Frank Walter) have won the Manitoba Junior “World Qualifier” competitions staged this weekend at Heather.

CurlManitoba Photo: l-r Coach Blaine Malo, Alexandre Fontaine, Elias Huminicki, Reece Hamm, Jordon McDonald

In the Junior Men’s event, Team McDonald blanked the opening end and had a draw for a three on the second after a Jordan Johnson takeout attempt wrecked on a guard. Up 3-0, Team McDonald controlled the play and the game ended in six ends with the score 7-1.

CurlManitoba Photo: l-r Coach Frank Walter, Mackenzie Elias, Katie McKenzie, Lane Prokopowich, Meghan Walter

The result in the Junior Women’s event also seemed inevitable after Team Walter stole two on the second end and three more on the third – both ends set up by a single centre guard and aggressive play behind it. Team Emma Jensen fought back with a single and steal of one to trail 5-2 at the break and they controlled play on the sixth end as well. Walter’s last rock, a delicate tap of her own stone to the button between a pair of Jensen stones with Jensen laying two, moved momentum back to her side. Team Walter won a measure for a steal on the seventh and Team Jensen conceded after making a last rock draw for one on the eighth.

The two teams will wear the Manitoba jackets at a national event in Saskatoon later this month. The winners there will represent Canada at the 2022 World Juniors.

(Noon: Sunday, Nov. 7) MCDONALD ADVANCES, MAISEY PLAYS JOHNSON IN JUNIOR MEN’S SEMIFINAL …..Jordon McDonald and his team have advanced to the final of Manitoba’s Junior Men’s “World Qualifier” at the Heather. Team McDonald defeated Josh Maisey and his team 7-5 this morning, scoring three coming home to win.

Maisey led early but a lead change after six showed a real momentum shift. Maisey led by three after three – McDonald scored four over the next three ends to lead 4-3 after six. Maisey made a game saver hit through a centre line port facing two on the seventh and tied the game 4-4.

Midway through the eighth end, the bell rang, signaling that the ninth would be the final end of play. McDonald had played the end aggressively, playing for a deuce and had Maisey in trouble. Facing three, Maisey outdrew the shot rock which was at least half on the button. McDonald had a makeable hit for two, possibly three or four, but rubbed a guard to give up a steal and trail 5-4 playing the final end.

McDonald was in trouble on the ninth until third Reece Hamm made the kind of double kill that earns a double star in the stats records – a hit up centre line that had to ‘paper’ past a guard. A Maisey draw followed by a McDonald miss and another Maisey draw, set up a dramatic double kill victory for McDonald.

Team Maisey drops to the afternoon semifinal against Jordan Johnson, who beat Jace Freeman in the playoff elimination game.

(11PM: Saturday, Nov. 6) JUNIOR PLAYOFFS SET FOR SUNDAY AT HEATHER…….With a 6-1 victory, Jace Freeman and his team have earned the fourth, and final, playoff spot in the Junior Men’s “World Qualifier” competition at Heather. Team Freeman defeated Thomas McGillivary and his team in the “C” Event qualifying game.

Team Freeman (Ryan Ostrowsky, Cyrus Brandt, Andrew McKay)    plays Team Jordan Johnson (Jayden Rutter, Tim Johsnon, Ryan Zapotochny) in the Page Playoff bottom side game with the loser eliminated and the winner advancing to the semi-final.

In the Page Playoff top side game, with the winner going direct to the final and the loser to the semi-final, Team Josh Maisey (Sean Flatt, Sean Giesbrecht, Adam Flatt) plays Team Jordon McDonald (Reece Hamm, Elias Huminicki, Alexandre Fontaine)

The first playoff draw is scheduled for 9AM Sunday with the semi-final at 2PM and the final at 7:30PM. The playoffs winning team will play in a national “World Qualifier” bonspiel in Saskatoon, later this month.

**

In the Junior Women’s competition, final standings have been determined a last round win by Team Emma Jensen (6-5 over Team Meghan Walter) and losses by Team Tansy Tober (10-6 to Team Morgan Maguet) and by Team Grace Beaudry (6-3 to Team Emily Ogg).

Team Jensen (Jaycee Terrick, Becky Friesen, Julia Millan) finishes in first place with a 4W-1L record while Team  Tober (Lexa Sigurdson, Caitlin Kostna, Stephanie Feelus) and Team Walter (Lane Prokopowich, Katie McKenzie, MacKenzie Elias) finishes tied with in second with a 3W-2L record.

The three-team playoff, semi-final winner advancing to the final against the first place team, is also scheduled for Sunday.

(5PM: Saturday, Nov. 6) JUNIOR PLAYOFFS WILL BE SET ON 7:30 DRAW SATURDAY DRAW….Jordan Johnson and his team have joined “A” Event qualifers Jordon McDonald and Josh Maisey in the Sunday playoff round of the “World Qualifier” competition underway at Heather.

Johnson bested Thomas McGillivary 9-4 Saturday afternoon to win the “B” event playoff spot. McGillvary will play Jace Freeman Saturday at 7:30PM in the “C” Event qualifying game.

In the Junior Women’s competition, Meghan Walter, Emma Jensen, and Tansy Tober and their teams all have 3W-1L records after posting win Saturday afternoon. Walter plays Jensen on the 7:30PM draw withthe winner improving to 4W-1L and being assured of a top two finish. If Team Tober beats Grace Beaudry on the evening draw, Tober will also be at 4W-1L and the three will be the top three finishers.

If Beaudry, whose record is currently 2W-2L, happens to beat Tober then there will be a three way tie for second place and the tiebreaker process will be implemented.

(7PM: Friday, Nov 5) MAISEY, MCDONALD ADVANCE IN JUNIOR MEN’S WORLD QUALIFIER……Team Josh Maisey and Team Jordon McDonald are the first teams to qualify for Sunday’s playoff action at Manitoba’s Junior “World Qualifer” bonspiel at Heather.

Maisey, with a win Thursday evening and one Friday, and McDonald with a pair of wins Friday will meet Sunday in the top side of the Page Playoff draw. As unbeaten teams, the loser will drop into the semi-final while the winner will advance direct to the final.

The third team to reach the junior men’s playoff round will be determined on the 2PM draw Saturday when Team Jordan Johnson plays Team Thomas McGIllivary.

In the women’s competition, Friday ends with four teams sitting on 2W-1L round robin records. On the Friday late draw, a win by Team Emma Jensen over Team Grace Beaudry brought Team Beaudry back into a 2W-1L tie with Team Jensen as well as with Team Meghan Walter and Team Tansy Tober, who both won on that draw.

(10PM: Thursday,Nov. 4) MAISEY OPENS WITH A WIN IN JUNIOR “WORLD QUALIFIER COMPETITION……Just over a month ago, Sean and Adam Flatt were lined up with their former junior skip Ryan Wiebe playing in the awkwardly named Pre-Trials Direct Entry event with a long-shot chance of going to the Olympics..

This week, they have joined forces with former rivals, Josh Maisey and Sean Giesbrecht, in this year’s last chance opportunity to go to the Canadian and World Juniors.

This new Maisey team was assembled just for this competition which presents an opportunity to compete in Curling Canada’s 2022 World Junior Qualifying Bonspiel later this month. Although the Wiebe team fell well short in Ottawa in September, winning only one of four games, the experience of competing at that level will be an asset this week at the Heather Curling Club.

Throwing third stones, Sean Flatt played a key role coming home in Team Maisey’s opening game against Aaron Van Ryssel.  Trailing by one coming home, Van Ryssel got a good start to the end and was building an end to steal when Flatt peeled two guards with his first rock and removed two from the rings with his second. From there it was a simple matter of trading rocks with Maisey winning the game on a last rock hit.

In the second Junior Men’s game on the Thursday evening kick-off draw, Tanner Graham dominated Ronan Peterson in a six end game. Graham returns to the ice at 9AM for a game against the top ranked team on the Manitoba Junior Curling Tour skipped by Jordon McDonald.

The Junior Women’s event also starts at 9AM Friday.

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