UPDATE: MacKenzie defeats Newson to claim P.E.I. Tankard

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Eddie MacKenzie stole deuces twice en route to defending his P.E.I. men’s Tankard title Sunday at the Montague Curling Club.

“The turning point was really the ninth end,” MacKenzie said in a telephone interview with The Guardian moments after the last end.

Trailing top-seeded Jamie Newson 4-3 in the eighth, MacKenzie scored a single to tie it. Newson missed a runback takeout in the ninth as MacKenzie stole a deuce to take a 6-4 lead that would standup as the final score. Both teams are from the Charlottetown Curling Complex.

“We got into some trouble. It was a pretty tough shot, but we had a chance to get out of it,” Newson said. “There’s definitely a few (shots) I’d like back.”

MacKenzie has won three of the past four championships.

“It’s nice to repeat,” he said. “It wasn’t an overly well-played game by either team but we snuck it out. . . It’s nice to grind it out.”

Newson agreed the play was a little sloppy in the final, which he added could have gone either way.

“We can’t hold our heads too low, but it’s still disappointing to come this close,” said Newson, who is 0-4 in Tankard finals in his career. “Each one gets a little bit tougher.”

MacKenzie’s rink of third Anson Carmody, second Tyler MacKenzie, lead Sean Ledgerwood, alternate Phil Gorveatt and coach Al Ledgerwood will represent the province at the Tim Hortons Brier in Kamloops, B.C., from March 1 to 9.

“I think we’ll just enjoy the moment,” MacKenzie said Sunday night when asked about nationals.

He added the team would review the field and come up with a game plan.

Three of MacKenzie’s last four games at the 10-team provincial championship were against Newson’s rink of third Andrew Robinson, second Sean Clarey, lead John Desrosiers, alternate Phillip McInnis and coach Peter Gallant.

Newson defeated MacKenzie 8-4 in the A qualifier, but MacKenzie beat Newson 7-6 in an extra end in the A-B Page playoff to advance straight to the final.

Newson defeated Blair Jay 6-4 in the semifinal.

Geographic location: Kamloops

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