Homan eliminated at PointsBet Invitational after losing draw to the button

Team Ontario skip Rachel Homan directs her team against Team Nova Scotia at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary, Alta., Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. Homan's third-seeded team was eliminated from the PointsBet Invitational on Friday after dropping a 7-6 decision to Kristie Moore's sixth-seeded side. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

FREDERICTON - Rachel Homan's third-seeded team was eliminated from the PointsBet Invitational Friday after dropping a 7-6 decision to Kristie Moore's sixth-seeded side.

Moore, who's filling in for absent skip Casey Scheidegger, scored two points in the ninth end and held Homan to a single in the 10th.

Since traditional extra ends are not used at this event, Moore sealed the victory by finding the rings with her draw to the button after Homan's throw was short of the paint.

"I knew that that was the one I wanted if we had that draw,” Moore said of her 10th end shot selection.

“We hadn’t played much of the game on the other side, and I hadn’t actually drawn for quite a while. I was happy to get that one in my for sure. It’s tricky out there and it’s not easy ice to draw on."

Moore played lead for Scheidegger at two Scotties Tournament of Hearts and the 2021 Tim Hortons Canadian Curling Trials before forming a new team in the off-season as a skip.

Despite her past experience playing with Jessie Haughian and against vice-skip Kate Hogan and lead Taylor McDonald, Moore said it's a process to get familiar with the team.

“We’re just trying to learn as much as we can out there. We’re a new team, literally," she said. "I was lucky enough to get to practice with Taylor and Kate two times before the event so we’re still just learning … learning their tendencies and learning as much as I can this whole weekend. I’m happy to be here still.”

Moore will next play second-seeded Kaitlyn Lawes, who topped No. 10 Penny Barker 9-4 to also advance to the semifinals of the single-knockout competition.

Fifth-seeded Jennifer Jones also advanced by outscoring No. 13 Selena Sturmay 11-9 and top-seeded Kerri Einarson doubled No. 8 Kelsey Rocque 10-5. Einarson and Jones will matchup in the other semifinal on Saturday.

In the men's draw, top-seeded Brad Gushue defeated John Epping 8-4 to continue his march to the final.

Despite the win, vice-skip Mark Nichols feels the team still has some work to do.

“There are some loose shots out there — from everyone, I think,” he said. “You’re definitely still knocking a little bit of rust off. You try to manage it as best you can based on what you’re feeling on the day.

"We had a good practice weekend last weekend (in Toronto), but the instincts take over when you’re out there. Lucky for us, we’ve had enough experience on the ice where we can manage those situations.”

Gushue of St. John's, N.L., will meet Winnipeg's Reid Carruthers in Saturday's semifinal. Carruthers took out Calgary's Kevin Koe 8-6 to advance.

In other action, Edmonton's Brendan Bottcher trounced Saskatoon's Colton Flasch 10-3 to earn a spot in Saturday's other semifinal against Matt Dunstone of Kamloops, B.C.

Dunstone scored an 8-7 win over Glenn Howard of Penetanguishene, Ont.

Play continues through Sunday at Willie O'Ree Place.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 23, 2022.

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

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