It looked like Murray Warren’s Team Manitoba was cruising to a victory over unbeaten Al Hacker (Northern Ontario) when they hit a speed bump sixth end Friday afternoon. Up four at the time, Warren and his team saw the Hackner foursome build a four ender to tie and then steal two on the seventh to lead by two coming home.
The last end looked like the Hackner win streak would continue until second Terry Warren buried in the 12 foot circle behind a corner guard (picture 1). The peel attempt was flashed and play moved to the centre where Hackner was laying two. A series of draws and taps turned the two red stones into two yellow Warren stones. With his first stone, skip Murray Warren put his stone exactly where he wanted it in the eight foot in front of the tee line.
Hackner had nothing but a double and roll (picture 2) to some kind of protected position but he rolled out and left Warren a draw to the rings for 3 and an 11-10 win.
Despite the loss, Northern Ontario will advance to the playoff round. The win gave Team Manitoba a 7W-2L record but no guarantee yet of being in the playoffs. They will advance with a Saturday morning win over New Brunswick. However, BC, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Mark Franklin’s Manitoba Host team are all at 6W-3L so the three teams to join Hackner in the playoffs will all be determined on Saturday’s final draw.
All four games on the final draw will have a bearing on the final standings.
In the women’s championship, Manitoba’s Judy Colwell team will advance to the playoff round. With a game to play Friday evening, British Columbia and Nova Scotia had 7W-1L records while Manitoba