MacKenzie-skipped P.E.I. squad loses to Yukon

Prince Edward Island facing must-win game this afternoon against Nova Scotia at Brier qualifier

Published on March 3, 2017

Prince Edward Island Matthew Nabuurs(left) and Sean Ledgerwood sweep during 2017 Brier pre-qualifying play at Mile One Centre Thursday night. Keith Gosse/The Telegram

©Keith Gosse/The Telegram

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. – Team P.E.I. knew what was on the line Friday morning at the Tim Hortons Brier qualifying tournament in St. John’s, N.L.

A win and they were on to the qualifying game for the Brier on Saturday. A loss would force a must-win Game 3 against a Nova Scotia team that is now 2-0 and playing comfortably.

Trailing Yukon 3-2 after four ends, Prince Edward Island scored four to take a 6-3 lead, but was outscored 9-1 in the last five ends to lose 12-7.

P.E.I., comprised of skip Eddie MacKenzie, third Sean Ledgerwood, second Matthew Nabuurs and lead Robbie Doherty, plays Nova Scotia at 2:30 p.m. Atlantic.

A P.E.I. victory combined with a Yukon win will force a tiebreaker Saturday at 8:30 a.m. Nova Scotia is ensured at least a spot in the tie-breaker game, if it is necessary.

P.E.I. started well in Friday morning’s game, forcing Yukon to one in the first end. The Island squad responded with two in the second on a successful draw to the four foot.

In the third end, with eight or more rocks surrounding the four-foot circle, Yukon won a measure for a single to tie the game.

In the fourth, a MacKenzie miscue on his first shot left P.E.I. with a tough draw to the side of the button. P.E.I.’s final rock did not curl enough and Yukon stole one. 

A great come around tap-back by Ledgerwood set up a big four ender to put the Island representatives from the Charlottetown Curling Complex back in the lead by three through five.

Yukon rebounded with a nice deuce that did not look possible with four rocks to come. In the seventh end, MacKenzie was left with a draw against three and was light, giving Yukon the steal to go ahead 8-6. 

MacKenzie rebounded with a draw to the button in the eighth end to move to within one point. Yukon pushed their lead to three with a pair in the ninth. 

P.E.I. was unable to get the three they needed in the 10th and gave up a steal of two.

In the other qualifying game, Nova Scotia's Jamie Murphy scored nine in the first three ends and went on to a convincing 17-4 win over Nunavut.

Compiled by Blair Weeks.