Close call for Martin

EDMONTON — Edmonton’s Kevin Martin won his first game at the Canadian Olympic curling trials but he had his hands full against his 25-year-old opponent.

Skip Kevin Martin

EDMONTON — Edmonton’s Kevin Martin won his first game at the Canadian Olympic curling trials but he had his hands full against his 25-year-old opponent.

Jason Gunnlaugson of Winnipeg, a baby-faced youngster with shaggy hair and in his first year as a skip, jumped out to a 3-1 lead with a steal of two points in the third end before the reigning Brier champion finally regained the lead in the seventh end.

Martin, the 2002 Olympic silver medallist, added a steal in the eighth on his way to a 7-5 win.

“I told you they were good, didn’t I? They made a ton of shots. It was a good game,” said Martin.

“We fought back though, and the guys didn’t give up because after three or four ends it didn’t look like they were going to miss anything. And he just doesn’t play with any fear at all, and that’s a scary guy to play,” he added. Martin was skipping his first game a year before Gunnlaugson was born.

“Thanks. I didn’t do that math so I appreciate that,” said Martin with a laugh. Gunnlaugson was proud of his team’s effort and seemed undaunted about losing to Martin.

“You could see when he got up he was sweating. We put them to the test, which you know not everyone here is going to do, and if we can put him to the test we’ve put ourselves in great shape for the rest of the round robin,” said Gunnlaugson, a poker player by trade.

“I think you’re going to see seven different Team Gunnlaugson’s this week. Everyone we’re going to play we’re going to play differently.”

Glenn Howard of Coldwater, Ont., proved that you have to be good to be lucky and lucky to be good.

All that two-time world champion Jeff Stoughton of Winnipeg had to do to win his game was to make a simple draw with his final stone in the 10th end to break open a 4-4 tie. He was heavy giving Howard a 5-4 victory.

“If you give Jeff a bucket of balls he’s always going to make it,” shrugged Howard.

“It’s huge. You want to get off to a good start and your’re playing against Jeff Stoughton — the two time world champion — and it was a battle back and forth and again we were very fortunate for Jeff to miss his last one.”

Stoughton said it was nobody’s fault but his own.

“It was just too bad I just threw it heavy so it was pretty simple. I just threw it too hard. We had every opportunity to win that game – nothing more you can ask for,” he said.

Edmonton’s Randy Ferbey took a huge lead over Toronto skip Wayne Middaugh and sat back and coasted to a 9-7 win.

Ferbey, who finished a disappointing 5-4 at the last Olympic trials, was happy with the outcome.

“We did what he had to do,” said Ferbey.

“We haven’t been on this stage for four or five years. Was I nervous? Absolutely.”

It was a good day for Edmonton teams at the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings Curling Trials, presented by Monsanto.

Kevin Koe joined Martin and Ferbey in the win column beating Pat Simmons of Davidson, Sask., 8-5.

In women’s action both Canadian women’s champion Jennifer Jones and Olympic bronze medallist Shannon Kleibrink were upended in their only draw of the day.

Kleibrink lost 8-3 to Chrystal Webster while Jones was dumped 8-5 by Amber Holland.

Calgary’s Cheryl Bernard made a double take out with her final shot to score five points and beat Krista McCarville 11-7 while Kelowna, B.C.’s Kelly Scott edged Stefanie Lawton 8-7.

Just Posted

Councillors want to represent Red Deer at AUMA

City council approves endorsement

Cannabis smoke raises health concerns

Smoke Free Bylaw returns to Red Deer city council Sept. 4

Avid Penhold climber Catlin Hannah’s death a reminder of the dangers of scrambling

Hannah never returned from his Mount Smuts attempt on Aug. 12.

Children, elderly at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

VANCOUVER — Thick smoke blanketing British Columbia communities far from any flames… Continue reading

WATCH: Medicine River Wildlife Centre opens new playground

The grand opening of the playground was Saturday morning

Police chiefs want new data-sharing treaty with U.S. as privacy questions linger

OTTAWA — Canada’s police chiefs are pressing the Trudeau government to sign… Continue reading

Pope on sex abuse: “We showed no care for the little ones”

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis issued a letter to Catholics around the… Continue reading

Ottawa announces $189M to extend employment insurance for seasonal workers

ESCUMINAC, N.B. — Ottawa has announced $189 million for an employment insurance… Continue reading

Trudeau formally announces he’ll run again in next year’s election

MONTREAL — Justin Trudeau will run again in the 2019 federal election.… Continue reading

Smoke from B.C. wildfires prompts air quality advisories across Western Canada

VANCOUVER — More smoky, hazy air is expected to blanket much of… Continue reading

Anti-pipeline protesters released days before weeklong jail sentences end

MAPLE RIDGE, B.C. — Several pipeline protesters were released from a British… Continue reading

All eyes on Andrew Scheer as Conservative convention set for Halifax

OTTAWA — After a week of internal caucus squabbles, Conservative Leader Andrew… Continue reading

Trump says his White House counsel not a ‘RAT’ like Nixon’s

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. — President Donald Trump insisted Sunday that his White House… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month