Manitobans Top Humpty's Champions CupWednesday Apr 27 2016
Manitoba teams skipped by Jennifer Jones and Reid Carruthers have won the season ending Humpty’s Champions Cup, the Grand Slam of Curling’s unique new final event which featured only event winning teams from the 2015-16 curling season. Jones and her St. Vital team defeated Rachel Homan-ON (7-5) in the Women’s final while Carruthers West St. Paul foursome was a 4-3 winner over John Epping-ON in the Men’s event, in a game which went two extra ends.
Both of this year’s Manitoba champions had also advanced to the semi-finals. Carruthers stole a single point on the eighth end to beat Mike McEwen 4-3 while Homan had beaten Kerri Einarson by the same 4-3 score.
Earlier in the season, the Jones and Carruthers teams had won the DEKALB SuperSpiel in Morris and it was those championships which earned the two Manitoba teams their invitation to the Champions Cup event.
Kerri Einarson and her Manitoba team lost 9-2 to Jennifer Jones' Manitobans in the final round robin game Friday at the Humpty's Champions Cup. As a result both teams finished with a 3-1 record and both teams advanced to the playoffs. In thee quarterfinals, again both won. With a 7-2 win over Stefanie Lawton-SK, Einarson advanced to the Saturday evening semifinal against Rachel Homan-ON. With a 6-3 win over Val Sweeting-ON, Team Jones advanced to a semifinal against Silvana Tironzoni-SUI.
In the men's event, Mike McEwen finished with a 6-3 win over David Murdoch-SCO to advance to a quarterfinal against Niklas Edin. The Manitobans posted a 7-1 win in that game and will play Reid Carruthers in the semifinal. Carruthers lost his final round robin game 6-3 to Brad Gushue-NL but finished 3-1 and in the playoffs, where the former Manitoba champion team defeated world champion Kevin Koe-AB 4-3 in the quarterfinal.
Manitoba champion Kerri Einarson and her team improved their record to 3-0 with a 6-4 win Friday morning over Stefanie Lawton-SK on the Friday morning draw in the Humpty's Champions Cup.
By the end of play Thursday, three of four Manitoba teams were still unbeaten. Mike McEwen (8-4 over John Epping-ON), Reid Carruthers (7-3 over John Shuster-USA), and Kerri Einarson (7-5 over Alison Flaxey-ON) all won their only game of the day to improve their records to 2-0. Jennifer Jones split a pair with a 5-4 loss to Lawton and a 6-2 win over Eve Muirhead-SCO. McEwen and Carruthers were the only unbeaten teams in the men's event while Einarson and Ayumi Ogasawara-JPN (3-) were the only unbeaten women's teams on Thursday evening.
Teams Jones & Einarson end their 4-game round robin against at 3pm (CDT) Friday. McEwen plays Shaun Meachem-SK and David Murdoch-SCO in Friday games while Carruthers must play Niklas Edin-SWE and Brad Gushue-NL.
Four Manitoba teams, two men's team and two on the women's side, are competing in the season ending Humpty's Tournament of Champions and all four opened the competition with victories. Mike McEwen (6-1 over Brady Clark-USA) and Reid Carruthers (8-4 over Bruce Mouat-SCO) won their opening day games, as did Kerri Einarson (7-3 over Eve Muirhead-SCO) and Jennifer Jones (10-1 over Alison Flaxey-ON).
The event features 15 teams on each side of the draw. Teams qualified by winning a major event in the past season.
Einarson won the Grand Slam's Tier 2 Challenge and the Manitoba Scotties while McEwen won the Grand Slam Masters of Curling, the Stu Sells Toronto Tankard, the Saskatoon Point Optical Classic, and the Manitoba Viterra Championship. Jones and Carruthers won only one event each, the DEKALB SuperSpiel in Morris, but that event near enough to the top of the list of events in terms of field strength to earn the invitation.
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