Johnson's a one-rock man

CON GRIWKOWSKY -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 7:52 AM ET

INNISFAIL -- There's more than a couple of good teams at this year's Kia Cup.

Although most of the ink has been spilled over pre-event favourites Randy Ferbey and John Morris, a pair of lesser-light Edmonton teams are threatening to keep things tight.

Mark Johnson and Jamie King are also off to 2-0 starts after Day 1 of the provincial men's curling championship.

Johnson, building on his win at last weekend's Viking Fridge Spiel, won a couple of one-rock decisions in Pool A.

If he can keep it going, a first-place battle against Ferbey is shaping up for tomorrow morning in both teams' last round-robin game.

"It was a good day," said Johnson. "Any time you can go 2-0 in this thing, you've got a good start going. We've been playing well. It's hard to expect to go undefeated in this thing.

"It's very important to finish first in your pool. If you give Randy a game up, boy, it's tough."

King needed a 10th-end steal in a 6-4 win over Rob Armitage in a game he led 4-1 at one point. King meets Morris tonight at 7.

"It worked out in the end," said King's last rock, Blake MacDonald. "These are good teams. It's not like you're expecting to blow everybody out. We were lucky to pull this one out. If your aspirations are to win this thing, I don't see how you can expect to lose any games. If you do, you'll need smoke and mirrors to win four in a row."

Vermilion's Dean Davidson picked up his first-ever provincials win last night, 6-5 over Calgary's Frank Morissette after he was blown out 10-4 by King in Draw 1.

"Being the first time here, it's nice to get that first win under your belt," said Davidson.

Kurt Balderston was the biggest surprise of the day, losing both his games. The Sexsmith skip lost last year's final to Ferbey.

EXTRA POINTS: Shawn Adams will represent Nova Scotia after knocking off defending Brier champ Mark Dacey yesterday in Bridgewater.


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