BRANDON -- Forgive David Nedohin if he was breathing a sigh of relief when all the skins were counted.
The Manitoba native, who throws last brick for Alberta's reigning world champion Randy Ferbey, knew his foursome may not have ever lived it down if it had gotten skinned on the ice by the Buffalo gals, no matter how good they are.
Nedohin set the tone with a difficult double kill in the very first end, then Ferbey went on to whip Team Canada's Jennifer Jones $52,050 to $7,950 in the inaugural Battle of the Sexes before about 2,000 witnesses at the Keystone Centre last night.
"I guess there would have been a little of that (ribbing)," conceded Nedohin. "But, to be honest, there would be no ribbing when you're looking at a team of that calibre, no question. They played well and, as the girls (New Brunswick's Andrea Kelly) showed earlier today in the junior game, that certainly I don't think there's really any big difference in the two genders in the sport. The elite teams are the elite teams regardless."
The $60,000 Skins Game was set up between the respective national champions and Nedohin suggested the score was more lopsided than it could have been, especially if Jones had won the $19,500 up for grabs in the seventh end.
'HAD OUR HANDS FULL'
Ferbey won the first three Skins before Jones finally won her first and only Skin in the fourth.
"They came back in the middle of the game and played really well," Nedohin said. "We certainly had our hands full."
And that pleased the Manitobans.
"We had our chances, we just couldn't capitalize on them," said second Jill Officer. "Overall, we did pretty well. Like, we don't play Skins as much as the men do so, I'm pleased with our performance. I mean, we made them think, we made them shoot. There was only end where the last rock didn't have to be thrown.
"There definitely are some differences. I mean these guys are the best ones to ever hit the ice so, it's tough knowing that going into it, and these guys are strong sweepers."
Jones, who admitted she missed her share of shots, suggested the women are catching up.
"The women's game is getting there," she said. "The men can obviously throw harder and their sweeping is just phenomenal, it's amazing to watch. It was really neat to play them. It was a great time and I'm glad we had the chance.
"It was a great experience that I'm hoping will continue. I was on the other side of the inch today and that's the way it goes. Hopefully, in the next bonspiel, I'll be on the right side of the inch."
BITERS: Team Canada third Cathy Overton-Clapham scored an amazing 28 out of 30 to beat Ferbey in the skills competition. But the Ferbey foursome out-scored Jones $3,770 to $2,250, which was part of the overall $60,000 total.