Bounces go Stoughton's way

CON GRIWKOWSKY, QMI AGENCY

, Last Updated: 10:11 AM ET

Winnipeg's Jeff Stoughton needed a miracle win against Wayne Middaugh yesterday morning to stay alive.

Then last night, he clinched a playoff spot when he drew for a deuce in an 8-7 win over Pat Simmons.

"We pulled it out, so it's good," said Stoughton. "You always feel pretty confident you're going to get the deuce. We made some good ones at the end. We're looking forward to Saturday."

Stoughton will face Glenn Howard, who fell to second place after his first loss of the week -- to Kevin Martin -- the same final three at the 2009 Brier in Calgary. This time, Stoughton has some unfinished business to take care of.

"You know, we played last three last year at the Brier and hopefully we can win the last two instead of losing the last one (to Martin)," said Stoughton. "We're going to take what we can get. Saturday is just going to be awesome. We just need a couple of shots here and there and we feel we can get this thing through."

Down 5-1 after four ends and struggling with ice conditions, Stoughton's crew fought back and capped their comeback 7-6 extra-end win with steals in the 10th and 11th ends.

"We're going to take it, because we haven't had many breaks go for us," said Stoughton.

Meanwhile, the crowd showed Jason Gunnlaugson they appreciated the Young Gunner. Even though the kid finished 0-7, he got a standing ovation.

"Thanks so much to the fans," said Gunnlaugson. "They've been so great. It's been a lot of fun. It's the best possible 0-7 weekend that ever you can have. They perked you up and it's a lot of fun. Seriously, if you could take away the fact I had to throw rocks this week, it would have been the greatest experience our team has ever had."

CON.GRIWKOWSKY@SUNMEDIA.CA


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