Injecting new blood has resulted in some positive early returns for Fort Rouge's Kristy Jenion.
With a completely new lineup, Jenion clipped Selkirk's surprising Kerri Flett 7-5 in the Scotties Tournament of Hearts Berth Bonspiel final at the East St. Paul Curling Club on Monday.
"It feels pretty darn good and it's a big relief not to have to play in the (city zone playdowns)," said Jenion, 29. "It's our second bonspiel win of the year, which we are very pleased with."
Jenion has hooked up with third Karen Klein, second Theresa Cannon and Jillian Sandison this season.
"It has been an adjustment because I had played with my front end for six years and Lisa (Roy) for four," Jenion said. "It was hard to let go but we were all ready for something different."
The new lineup is the first to qualify for the 2009 provincial Hearts in Neepawa, Feb. 4-8. For an added bonus, Manitoba's Jennifer Jones already has a bye into the nationals as reigning Canadian (and world) champion.
"We won't have to curl against a world champion so that opens it up a little bit," Jenion said. "But it will still be tough because I'm sure there will still be a lot of good teams there."
Coincidentally, both Cannon and Sandison played junior for Flett last season.
"Kerri has to be very pleased with her weekend and I'm sure she will do well in her zone," Jenion said.
Jenion had advanced by bouncing former Manitoba champion Janet Harvey of Assiniboine Memorial 7-6 in a semifinal. Flett eliminated Brandon's Tina Kozak 6-5 in the other semifinal.
NOTE: The junior men's and women's city zone playdowns will be played at the Pembina Curling Club this weekend.