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McEwen Teams Finishes 4-4 at Calgary Brier

Thursday Mar 11 2021
by Resby Coutts / Photo: Curling Canada-Michael Burns

Mike McEwen's Wild Card team from West St. Paul won their second game of the day, a 14-2 win over winless Yukon. Team McEwen finishes their Brier in Calgary with 4 wins and 4 losses and do not advance to the next round of competition. 

Yukon/Mikkelsen
000 001 01x x  2
Wild Card/McEwen
222 340 10x x  14

**

(Thursday Morning) McEwen Teams Wins But Will Not Advance at Brier: Despite a 12-3 win Thursday morning over Northwest Territories, Mike McEwen's Wild Card team has lost any possibility of advancing to the next round at the Calgary Brier. Already with four losses, Team McEwen needed help in the form of an Alberta loss. It didn't happen. Alberta's Team Bottcher defeated winless Yukon. McEwen's final game against Yukon will be for pride only, an opportunity to finish with a 4-4 record.

Northwest Territories/Skauge
001 000 02x x  3
Wild Card/McEwen
120 431 10x x  12

NEXT GAME: Thursday 7:30pm CST VS Yukon/Mikkelsen
**
(Wednesday Afternoon): Fourth Loss for Wild Card/Team McEwen: Hopes of a Brier championship have faded for Mike McEwen and his Wild Card team from West St. Paul as they took their fourth loss Wednesday afternoon, a 9-3 loss to Alberta's Brendan Bottcher. Bottcher improved to 4-2  Team McEwen gave up a three on the second end followed by deuces on ends 4 & 6. 

Northern Ontario's Brad Jacobs, with a win over Team Manitoba, improved to 5-2 and are tied with Manitoba in the win column but have one more loss going into the final day of play. At 4 losses, with a pair of wins on Thursday, Team McEwen could still advance to the next round (or at least a tiebreaker) - with a pair of losses for by Alberta AND a loss by New Brunswick. The good news for Team McEwen is that they play Yukon (0-6) and Northwest Territories (1-5). The bad news for Team McEwen is that Alberta also plays Yukon while New Brunswick plays Northwest Territories.

However, even in that unlikely scenario, advancing with four losses which carry forward to the next round makes it VERY unlikely the team would be among the final three in the playoffs.

Wild Card/McEwen
101 010 00x x  3
Alberta/Bottcher
030 202 11x x  9

NEXT GAME: Thursday 9:30am CST VS Northwest Territories/Skauge
**

(Tuesday Morning) Wild Card/Team McEwen at 2-3 After Loss to Ontario: Mike McEwen's Manitoba Wild Card team has lost its third game in five starts with a morning loss to the Wayne Middaugh skipped Glenn Howard Wild Card team. Middaugh won the game with a big weight double kill through a narrow port up the centre line to score a pair with his final stone.

McEwen currently trails five other teams in the standings and plays only one of them, Alberta on Wednesday afternoon. Wins over Alberta and the stillwinless Yukon and Northwest Territories are necessary for the Wild Card Manitobans to finish 5-3 and have any hope of advancing to the next stage of the championship. Even then, teams with three losses are unlikely to advance to the three team championship round.

Wild Card/Howard-Middaugh
020 020 000 2  6
Wild Card/McEwen
101 001 020 0  5

NEXT GAME: Wednesday 2:30pm VS Alberta/Bottcher
**
(Monday Afternoon) Wild Card/Team McEwen at 2-2 After Loss to Manitoba: Jason Gunnlaugson's Team Manitoba is the only undefeated team  in Pool A after they won their third game of the Brier Monday afternoon, an 8-5 victory over the Mike McEwen Wild Card team. Not looking too far ahead, the Team Manitoba skip said after the game it is pretty early to get excited about "undefeated" but he said "it definitely has been a good start for a long week."

Wins over both Alberta's Brenda Bottcher and McEwen are a particularly positive note. Wins over two teams ranked slightly better are always important.

Asked to look ahead, Gunnlaugson would only say "we are capable of beating all the teams out here. If I can pull my weight we can win a lot of games. After today's only game, the Pool A standings board shows the unbeaten Gunnlaugson team a win ahead of Alberta (Bottcher) and New Brunswick (Grattan) at 3-1. Team McEwen is at 2-2 with the afternoon loss.

Manitoba/Gunnlaugson
010 020 041 X  8
Wild Card/McEwen
102 000 200 X  5

NEXT GAME: Tuesday 9:30am CST VS Wild Card/Howard
**
(Sunday Evening) Wild Card/Team McEwen Improves to 2-1: Mike McEwen and his Brier Wild Card team from West St. Paul Curling Club won their only game of the day Sunday, a 10-7 win over British Columbia. The win improves the Team McEwen record to 2-1 after three games. Scoring deuces with last rock is always the plan but not always a plan that works.

'We did a good job of capitalizing on opportunities. When we had an opportunity today we were good at executing," McEwen said after the game. He also stated that a big part of curling at this level is avoiding steals and execution, rock placement, was such that there were none against and one for today.

Wild Card/McEwen
202 102 020 1  10
BC/Laycock
030 010 102 0  7

NEXT GAME: Monday 2:30pm CST VS Manitoba/Gunnlaugson
**
(Saturday Evening) Wild Card/Team McEwen Rebounds for Evening Win over Northern Ontario: Mike McEwen and his Manitoba Wild Card team bounced back Saturday evening from a shaky first game effort earlier in the day. Matched up with former Brier champion Brad Jacobs and his Northern Ontario team. Mcewen trailed 5-3 after six ends but scored a deuce and then stole two more to lead 7-5 after eight ends. Jacobs blanked the ninth but couldn't get the misses coming home he needed from Team McEwen, who stole another point for an 8-5 win.

"It was huge for us to rebound. I'd have been happy to be 1-1 after the first two games, we just did it in the reverse order," McEwen told the post-game Zoom media conference.

He and third Reid Carruthers explained the early loss as "just a little bit of rust and not much time to sync up our deliveries." However, they acknowledged that James Grattan had simply out-performed them in the morning and that they felt much better about their game and about their feel for the ice in the evening game.

Wild Card/McEwen
010 110 220 1  8
Northern Ontario/Jacobs
102 002 000 0  5

NEXT GAME: Sunday 2:30pm CST VS British Columbia/Laycock
**
(Saturday Morning) Wild Card/Team McEwen Loses Opener to New Brunswick: It was not a great start for Mike McEwen and his Wild Card team. Opening against James Grattan and his New Brunswick, the Manitobans saw a more confident Grattan team than usually shows up for the first game of the Brier. 

Explaining that his teams don't usually don't get a chance to prepare on Brier-type, this year's pandemic conditions allowed icemakers to prepare ice more like they would experience in Calgary for the team's practices. "I felt a lot more confident going into this game than usual for a first game," Grattan said.

The teams played even for the first half of the game and were tied 2-2 at the mid-game break. New Brunswick had the McEwen team in trouble the rest of the way and misses on a pair of runback attempts resulted in New Brunswick steals on the 7th & 8th ends to give Grattan a 6-2 lead enroute to a 6-3, nine end victory.

Wild Card/McEwen
100 101 001 x  3
New Brunswick/Grattan
001 102 110 x  6

NEXT GAME: Saturday 7:30pm CST VS Northern Ontario/Jacobs
**
(Friday) Wild Card/Team McEwen Brier Schedule: Playing Pool A, Mike McEwen's eam Manitoba's Brier starts Saturday morning with a first game against New Brunswick' James Grattan at 9:30am CST. They have two games Saturday, one a day Sunday through Wednesday and finish the round robin first stage with a pair of games on Thursday. Their match-up with Jason Gunnlaugson's Team Manitoba team occurs Monday afternoon at 2:30pm CST.

MANITOBA SCHEDULE
Saturday 2:30pm CST VS New Brunswick/Grattan
Saturday 7:30pm CST VS Northern Ontario/Jacobs
Sunday 2:30pm CST VS British Columbia/Laycock
Monday 2:30pm CST VS Manitoba/Gunnlaugson
Tuesday 9:30am CST VS Wild Card/Howard
Wednesday 2:30pm VS Alberta/Bottcher
Thursday 9:30am CST VS Northwest Territories/Skauge
Thursday 7:30pm CST VS Yukon/Mikkelsen



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