MONTREAL, Que. – Though the road through the Scotties got a little bumpy for Chelsea Carey, at the end, the Manitoban skip clinched second place on the final day of the round robin with a 6-4 squeaker win over Prince Edward Island’s Kim Dolan.
The win wrapped a 9-2 record through the week, and booked Team Manitoba’s ticket to the coveted 1 vs. 2 game at 6:30 CST tonight, where they will face razor-sharp defending champions Team Rachel Homan.
The first time those two teams met at this Tournament of Hearts, Homan pulverized the Manitoban foursome – indeed, the Canadian champs sailed 11-0 through the round robin – but Carey, third Kristy McDonald, second Kristen Foster and lead Lindsay Titheridge, do have a winning career record against Homan’s Ontarian rink.
The second-place didn’t come easy. It seemed as if Carey had the spot locked up on Thursday night – she needed just one more win in two games, one against fourth-place finisher Val Sweeting (8-3) and the other against Dolan, who was long out of playoff contention. Winning either one would have lifted her above Saskatchewan’s Stefanie Lawton (8-3) and clinched her second place.
But on the final draw of the round robin, both Carey and Lawton struggled against lower-ranked opponents. Carey’s game rode on her final shot in the 10th end, where she took out two of Dolan’s rocks above the button to prevent a steal, and seal the winning deuce.
Meanwhile, Lawton’s game against young Yukon skip Sarah Koltun (2-9) was also tied coming home, and Lawton also held the hammer. But she missed on her last shot, a simply open hit, which handed Koltun a steal of one, a 6-5 win, and let the 20-year-old rookie end her tournament on a winning note.
The Scotties Tournament of Hearts 1 vs. 2 game between defending Canadian champion Rachel Homan and Team Manitoba skip Chelsea Carey is set to air on TSN at 6:30 p.m. tonight. The winner will earn a berth in Sunday night’s final, while the loser will drop down to the semifinal on Saturday afternoon.
Meanwhile, Lawton and Sweeting will face each other on Saturday morning in the 3 vs. 4 Page playoff, battling to make the semifinal.