With his team standing around him, the quartet prepared themselves for their game against Wayne Tallon’s New Brunswick rink. Both teams went into the game with undefeated records.
The focus would pay off as Ontario made its way past the New Brunswick rink by a 6-3 score.
Rajala and crew would stick to their game plan and tack on points one at a time, en route to extending their undefeated record to 5-0 (won-lost) at the time.
New Brunswick, meanwhile, answered back with a 9-3 win over Newfoundland and Labrador’s Glenn Goss in the evening draw to move into a first-place tie with Ontario at 5-1.
Nova Scotia’s Alan O’Leary handed Ontario its first loss of the round robin with a 9-1 triumph. It was a big win for Nova Scotia, which moved into a four-way tie for second place with P.E.I. (Rod MacDonald), Quebec (Robert MacLean) and Alberta (Wade White), which doubled the Northwest Territories’ Glen Hudy 9-7 on Tuesday night. All teams are 4-2.
It was a bounce-back game for Nova Scotia, which gave up three points in the 10th end of its morning game against Alberta to force an extra end. Alberta then stole a single point in the 11th end for a 9-8 win.
In a highly anticipated game against New Brunswick, Rajala assessed his team played really well.
“It was a close game, both teams are just scratching for any points they can get right now,” Rajala said.
Both teams were nearly perfectly matched through the first six ends, trading singles in each end aside from a clean sheet in the second end.
Ontario opened the scoring the first, before New Brunswick tied things up in the third. Ontario scored one again in the fourth, and then avoided a major deficit in the fifth.
With three red New Brunswick rocks sitting in the house with one shot remaining, Ontario managed to scrape by its own guard, knock out two reds and leave their own stone as shot rock. With the hammer, New Brunswick managed to draw to the button and score one.
Ontario would answer back in the sixth with yet another single in the sixth and take the lead with a steal in the seventh when New Brunswick missed a key shot late in the end, knocking two of their own stones out of the house.
New Brunswick would draw a single point in the next end to pull within one, before Ontario cemented their lead with singles in the final two ends.
With its last shot of the game, New Brunswick third (throwing last rocks) Mike Kennedy attempted a difficult shot, attempting to push back two guards and remove two Ontario stones to sit two and tie the game. The near-impossible shot looked good the whole way down the ice, before the second deflection narrowly missed both stones in the house, drawing oohs and aahs from the spectators.
“That was a close one,” Rajala said of the final shot. “It was a real difficult shot, but they almost got it.”