ALBERTON, P.E.I. – Veronica Smith’s Cornwall rink travelled to Alberton on Tuesday night to beat the storm.
They wanted to make sure they’d be ready for the opening draw of the 2019 P.E.I. Scotties Tournament of Hearts provincial women’s curling championship. They just didn’t count on having to beat the flu, too. The team arrived at the Western Community Curling Club on Wednesday morning just as a forecasted storm was settling in, but with just three curlers. Second stone Sabrina Smith stayed behind to recover.
That left third stone Jane DiCarlo and lead Whitney Jenkins to handle all of the sweeping. The skip was pleased with how her team responded in an 8-5 win over Lisa Jackson of the Charlottetown Curling Complex.
“When you put something like that into your mind first thing, first game, it’s hard, so we came up this morning (Wednesday) and said, ‘You know what, we’re playing with three,’ we’ve done this before in other tournaments and we were focused,” said Smith. “We knew what we had to do out there, and we just played shot by shot.”
Both sweepers were able to switch from side to side for directional sweeping.
“We have good sweepers on our team, so I knew we would be fine there,” added Smith, who was prepared to go with three curlers for their next game, too.
Silver Fox’s Melissa Morrow scored four with hammer in the eighth, bringing her game against Montague’s Tammy Dewar to an early conclusion – 10-4.
“We played very well,” said Morrow, the only member of her team with previous Scotties experience.
It was Morrow’s first time skipping at that level, although she skipped the same team in the provincial Travelers championship last year.
Morrow said her draws were working well in the opener. Her first hit of the game was in the eighth end.
“Just keep going, making our shots and staying positive,” Morrow said of her team’s resolve going forward.
Team Morrow was to face nine-time Scotties champion Suzanne Birt later Wednesday, sharing a draw with the opening two men’s Tankard games.
In the other opening-draw game, Sarah Fullerton and her Charlottetown/Silver Fox rink scored its only deuce of the game in the eighth end to open up a 5-4 lead on the Chloé McCloskey rink from Charlottetown. They stole a point in the ninth, and ran McCloskey out of rocks in the 10th for a 6-4 victory.
“It was a well-played game. We had to be patient, but, overall, we were happy with the ice conditions,” Fullerton assessed their game.
She agreed the deuce was timely.
“We wanted to capitalize that late in the game,” noted Fullerton. “It was a bonus to get a steal in nine.”
Fullerton said lead Aleya Quilty got the eighth end set up well with a corner guard, and then got one around it buried.
Fullerton and Smith were set to meet in Wednesday’s late draw.