OLIVER PAIPOONGE – Even a world champion like Al Hackner can have an off night.
Hackner’s foursome struggled for most of the night in their match against skip Krista McCarville, who is gearing up for next week’s Olympic Pre-Trials in Liverpool, N.S., ultimately falling 6-1 at Kakabeka Falls Curling Club, despite having hammer for most of the night.
McCarville was able to capitalize on mistakes in the second end with final stone, throwing into the rings to score a pair for a 2-0 lead she’d never relinquish.
In the fourth end, Hackner came up short on his first shot and hit and rolled too far with his second, giving McCarville a steal of one.
Needing to score points before the game got out of hand, Hackner instead gave up a steal of two in the fifth, falling short on a draw to the four-foot, facing a pair of McCarville rocks in scoring position.
It just wasn’t their night, Hackner said.
“They didn’t give us a lot of misses,” he said. “We were under the gun throwing at their rocks all night. It’s the way the rocks sometimes go. I just missed shots by a fraction here and a fraction there. It’s just missing, but it’s not good enough.”
McCarville, who improved to 3-0 in Tbaytel Major League of Curling play, said she told her husband, Mike, before the match she expected it would be one of the toughest her team, which includes Sarah Potts, Ashley Sippala and Oye-Sem Won, might face all season long.
“Whenever you play Al you know he’s going to come out and make lights out shots and calls, so it was unexpected to have that lead, for sure,” McCarville said.
“I think just getting a lead on this ice, we threw a lot of guards, which seemed to be a little easier on this ice. For them to try to get around those guards or bail with those guards up, it’s definitely a tougher game. Being up on this ice is nice.”
Wednesday was a night of one-side matches, at least in early-draw play.
Jonathan Vellinga finished off Britney Malette’s foursome in six ends, claiming a 5-2 victory for their first win of the seasons.
“The boys, they shot good and we just had the ice conditions work in our favour. The ice was good,” Vellinga said. “It was us controlling the front end and really controlling where we put our rocks and showing up and shooting (well).”
The match was tied 1-1 in the third, when Vellinga (1-2) scored a triple to take a 4-1 lead, taking control of the game against an opponent still seeking its first win of the season.
In other action, Dylan Johnston stole two in the second and scored deuces with hammer in the fifth and seventh end to down Mike Pozihun 7-2 to keep pace with McCarville with a 3-0 record. Pozihun fell to 0-3.
Byran Burgess scored two in the seventh to claim a 6-4 win over Frank Morrissette, who had rallied to tie it an end earlier with a pair, having earlier trailed 3-0.
In late-draw play, Trevor Bonot doubled Dallas Burgess 4-2, Kory Carr knocked off Ben Mikkelsen 4-2 and Mike Desilets edged Kent Maarup 6-5.