Lights are on

CON GRIWKOWSKY -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 9:25 AM ET

INNISFAIL -- It's always a tough go when the spotlight starts shining and always interesting to see who emerges.

Both Randy Ferbey and John Morris found a way to scramble out of difficult situations in yesterday morning's draw at the Alberta curling championships with come-from-behind wins.

But the night draw turned out to be a different story.

Ferbey hung on for a 8-7 win over Kurt Balderston, the guy he beat in last year's final at Hinton.

Morris did not fare as well.

Morris got clobbered 10-4 by Jamie King, meaning King has won Pool B and Morris is in for a dogfight.

"We struggled," said Morris. "I'll take full credit for that one."

Ferbey needs to beat Mark Johnson in today's final round-robin match to claim first place in Pool A in the battle of 4-0 teams.

NO EASY FEAT

That will be no easy feat as Johnson is currently riding a 10-game win streak dating back to his win at last weekend's Viking Fridge Spiel.

"We've got to get up early (9 a.m. game) - that's a piss off," said Ferbey. "No, really. I wish I was in Jamie's spot where his game means nothing. We could have gone out and had a good time. Now we have to watch the clock. That's the only difference."

Ferbey's team has been so dominant at this event that the skip's often guilty of watching what's going on on the other sheets.

Still, he had enough time to sneak a peek at whether Morris could mount his own comeback.

"John was basically a reincarnation of Kevin Martin and Wayne Middaugh rolled into one - unbelievable some of the shots he was making (in the morning game). He kept their team in there."

Whether you have to be good to be lucky or lucky to be good is a matter of debate, but there was luck involved in both contests.

"That's curling," said Ferbey. "Sometimes luck is on your side and sometimes it's not. You're not going to be leading every game. Everybody can make shots out there. It's a matter of will they or won't they."

Morris could not find the same magic against King and now faces an uphill battle. He needs four wins to claim his first Alberta title.

UP AGAINST IT

Morris is assured of a second-place finish and will be up against the team that emerges as the third-place team in Pool B.

"With the way the pools are set up, the difference between first and second is miles apart," said Morris.

"Let's say we go 4-1, let's say we beat Frank the Tank (Morissette). All of a sudden, we're in the same boat as a team that finishes 2-3."

Morris could not deny he was the author of his own misfortune. "Obviously, we dug our own hole. It's tough when the difference between first and second-place finish in the pool is a huge discrepancy. That's the only thing I see wrong with this set-up."

Morris could not adjust quickly enough to a bad rock and took full blame for his fate.

"Bottom line is I have to play better and I have to start making shots. I have to get more mentally tough out there. I'll take responsibility. I have to pick up my socks."

EXTRA ENDS: Larry Gardeski, who helped Tom Reed win the 2003 world senior championship, died Wednesday from prostate cancer.


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