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Brandon teams on last legs at Safeway Championship

NEEPAWA — All four teams remaining at the Safeway Championship in Neepawa are still alive, but not by much.

One more loss will dash the hopes of the Brandon Curling Club’s Rob Fowler and Terry McNamee, as well as former Brandonite Mike McEwen and the Wheat City’s own Scott Ramsay, who curls out of Winnipeg.

Fowler and McNamee both lost their A-side qualifiers in the playoff round Saturday morning and dropped to the B side of the draw, while McEwen and Ramsay won their B-side games to stay alive.

Fowler gave up a pair of four-enders in an 8-2 loss to Sean Grassie, his second loss to Grassie in two days. However, the defending provincial champion and his team of Allan Lyburn, Richard Daneault and Derek Samagalski feel they can turn the ship around.

"It feels like we’re in a long 12-round boxing match here," said Fowler, who beat Grassie twice en route to winning last year’s title. "We just keep plugging along with one step forward and one step back, so we’ll keep battling."

Fowler will play Ramsay, who defeated Steen Sigurdson 8-6 in his must-win B-side semifinal.

Meanwhile, McNamee dropped an 8-4 decision to nine-time provincial champion Jeff Stoughton and fell to this afternoon’s B-side qualifier against Mike McEwen at 2 o’clock. That game will be featured on NACTV. Westman Cable, MTS and Bell will all pick up the feed.

McEwen found his game as he beat Dennis Bohn 7-2 in the other B-side semifinal.

The McEwen-McNamee winner will play the Fowler-Ramsay victor in the 2-2 Page playoff game at 6:30 p.m., while the losers will be eliminated from the event.

Stoughton and Grassie will meet in the 1-1 Page playoff game at the same time. That game will be broadcast live on Sportsnet West and City TV Winnipeg.

» cjaster@brandonsun.com

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