BEAUSEJOUR — The way his Saturday had gone, Mike McEwen had to wonder if the curling gods were conspiring against him.
In an extra end of the 3-4 Page playoff game on Saturday night against Vic Peters, the top seed watched Vic’s son Daley execute an in-off that forced McEwen to draw to the four foot for the win.
“We said he’s probably going to make it, and sure enough,” McEwen said with a chuckle. “At least he didn’t stick it, so I just had to hit four foot. We knew he was going to be close.”
McEwen had no problem drawing to the grey paint and advanced to Sunday’s semifinal against Brandon’s Terry McNamee with the 5-4 overtime triumph. Nothing came easy for the Next One on a wild and wacky Saturday.
“I feel pretty good,” said McEwen, whose post-game scrum was more like one big exhale. “I felt if we could just get to Sunday, maybe we’d look like a different team on Sunday. It’s been a tough day.
“Other than the (Randy) Neufeld game (a 7-2 victory), we had to find ways to win. It wasn’t looking good in a lot of our games.”
McEwen started his day by giving up five to McNamee in the eighth end of their playoff round A-side qualifier. That turned a 4-4 tie into a 9-4 loss.
After grinding his way past Neufeld, McEwen and company had to do everything in their power to get past the Peters clan.
“We’re just finding a way to win,” he said. “It’s not pretty. It’s sometimes ugly. But we’re just finding a way.”
McEwen has no problem playing an extra game on Sunday if need be and thinks it might even be an advantage.
“I feel pretty good going up against Terry, and I just want the one shot at Jeff (Stoughton),” he said. “If I beat Terry, then I’m going to get that shot.”
THE CREAM: The Manitoba Curling Media Association voted Terry McNamee as the skip on its all-star team.
Also getting the nod for their fine play at the Sun Gro Centre this week were Jeff Stoughton’s front end of Steve Gould (lead) and Reid Carruthers (second), and Vic Peters, who calls the game for his team but throws third stones.
NEXT UP: Curl Manitoba announced that Dauphin will host the 2012 provincial men’s championship from Feb. 8-12.
The event was also held at Credit Union Centre in 2007. Next year’s winner will advance to the 2012 Brier.
ICE MEN: Winnipeg Blue Bombers quarterback Buck Pierce and offensive lineman Glenn January were at the Sun Gro Centre on Saturday to sign autographs, and they threw a few rocks after the morning draw as well.