Late mistake painful

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 8:49 AM ET

THOMPSON -- Jill Thurston has earned her second trip to the national Scott.

But this will be the first time she will actually suit up for a game.

After Thurston helped Cathy Overton-Clapham win the 2000 title during the absence of a pregnant Connie Laliberte, the skip returned and Thurston was relegated to fifth. But you can bet skip Janet Harvey will have no plans to sit her all-star third in London, Ont., next month.

"Yeah, that's very exciting to be playing," said Thurston, 34. "Last time was a little disappointing but I knew it was coming. It just felt really special playing with these three because I know I'll be playing and that's great."

Ironically, Harvey will open the Scott versus Team Canada's Jennifer Jones, who played third for Thurston in junior and has Overton-Clapham at third.

"We have worked very hard," Thurston added.

"I don't think I've ever practised this much in my life. We've played a lot of games, lot of spiels and obviously, it's worked.

"I'm really happy for Janet. I know how hard she's worked and I know how badly she's wanted it. She's a fierce competitor and I'm just very happy for her."

YIKES!: St. Vital's Kristy Jenion advanced to the final when she lucked out in the semifinal. Jenion stole the winning three in a 9-8 victory when St. Vital skip Karen Porritt sailed an attempted draw with the hammer to the back 12.

"It feels really bad," said Porritt. "Really, really bad."

Porritt almost fell coming out of the hack on the ill-fated shot.

"Yeah, except I still felt I threw it good," she said. "I was a little shaky but I was fine. I just wasn't as solid as I sometimes am. I still thought, when I let go of it, I had pretty good weight. It just ran. It never came up and it never died.

"They (sweepers) panicked and jumped it. Like, it didn't curl a foot. If it curls a foot, then I'm fine. The weight wasn't bad on it, they just jumped it and it ran."

Porritt also second-guessed her own shot selection with the final two stones.

"We had a great week, we played well and apparently, it's just not meant to be," she said.

"At the end, we said, 'Let's go for three' and we got lucky because Karen doesn't miss very often," said Jenion, who had bounced Fort Rouge's Shauna Streich 5-4 in the two-two game.

DREAM TEAM: Harvey and Thurston, were named to the all-star squad picked by the Manitoba Curling Media Association. Susan Baleja (Porritt) and Raunora Westcott (Jenion) were the second and lead, respectively.

JONES BACK: Nova Scotia's legendary Colleen Jones has earned her way back to the Scott. Others in the field include Alberta's Cathy King, P.E.I.'s Suzanne Gaudet, Newfoundland's Heather Strong, N.B.'s Andrea Kelly, Yukon/NWT's Kerry Koe and Quebec's Eve Belisle ... Kruger has now officially extended its sponsorship of the national Scott to 2010.

BITER: Virden's Graham Freeman has been invited to next month's Grand Slam in St. John's, Nfld.


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