Manitoba siblings share Olympic dream

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 12:59 PM ET

HALIFAX -- Kelly Scott was the last to skip a Manitoba junior women's team to a world crown.

Her brother, Kevin MacKenzie is a former Manitoba junior men's champ. And they are believed to be the first brother and sister to compete at the same Canadian Curling Trials which start here today. Which means they could both end up at the Olympics in Italy together.

"We've talked about it," admitted MacKenzie, who now plays second for B.C.'s Pat Ryan. "For both of us to win this and go to the Olympics would be something else, too.

"It's a possibility, I suppose, but all the stars would have to line up for both of us to win."

Scott, who is now skipping a B.C. squad, said their parents are coming to watch.

"It will be pretty important and a pretty stress-filled week for the whole family," she said. "It will be a pretty big show once it gets started."

UNDER PRESSURE: Manitoba's Jennifer Jones opens against Saskatchewan's Sherry Anderson, the runner-up at the 2001 trials, and Ontario's Jo-Ann Rizzo today. Anderson will get the hammer since her foursome outscored Jones in the draw-to-the-button contest.

The key to success may be handling the pressure, especially after a loss.

"Just take each game as it comes and not look at the end result," Jones philosophized. "Hopefully, we'll do that and give ourselves a shot at the end of the week."

JITTERY JEFF: Manitoba's Jeff Stoughton faces Alberta's John Morris this afternoon, with Morris earning the hammer.

For Stoughton, the jitters will start when his team comes down to watch Jones play this morning.

"Nothing yet for jitters but it will happen (today) for sure -- it had better," he said, adding that Jones will always play on the same sheet his team will use the following draw. "It will be exciting to come down here, watch a bit of the ladies' draw and get in the mood.

"The nerves will be there, for sure. You want to play well and get off to a good start. Every team looks at first four games and hopefully, that sets a good tone for your event."

RUSS IN: Newfoundland's Brad Gushue has spent much time defending his decision to insert former world champion Russ Howard into his lineup. Howard will hold the broom and throw second stones while Gushue sweeps and throws last brick.

"The chemistry's been great," he said. "People are saying it's going to affect the chemistry of the team and I think it is affecting it in a positive way."

However, second Mike Adam has been relegated to fifth man.

"He's human," said Gushue. "I'm sure he's a little disappointed but we all knew going into the trials that we were going to do whatever we needed to win. He'd rather go to the Olympics as a fifth man than finish fifth or sixth at the trials as a lead or second."

Actually, Gushue's biggest concern is how sweeping will affect him by the end of the week.

BITER: CurlTV.com has obtained permission to webcast the morning trials draws.


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