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Jacobs rink opens Grand Slam of Curling schedule with championship appearance

The team has appeared in the championship game of all four tournaments they've played in this season
2020-03-03 Team Jacobs Brier MB-CC
Photo Michael Burns/Curling Canada

Facing some stiff competition, Brad Jacobs and his team from the Community First Curling Centre locally came up just short of a tournament title in the first Grand Slam of Curling event of the season, which wrapped up Sunday evening in Oakville, Ont.

The Jacobs rink, which includes third Marc Kennedy, second E.J. Harnden, and lead Ryan Harnden, advanced to the final of the Masters before dropping a 7-5 decision to Bruce Mouat of Scotland on Sunday.

It was the fourth appearance in a tournament final this season for the Jacobs rink.

Trailing 5-4 through seven ends, Mouat made a hit and stick with his last shot to score three in the eighth end to pick up the victory.

With the game tied at four through six ends, Jacobs looked to hit and stick around with his final shot to score two. Instead, Jacobs’ final stone rolled out and the Sault rink would hold just a 5-4 lead heading into the final end.

Jacobs advanced to the final thanks to a 5-4 quarter-final win over Calgary’s Kevin Koe in an extra end and a 9-4 win in six ends in the semifinal over Brad Gushue of St. John’s, Nfld.

The quarter-final win over Koe was the second meeting of the tournament between the two teams.

Jacobs picked up the win over Koe thanks to a single point in the extra end after the Calgary-based skip forced the end with a steal of one in the eighth end.

With the game tied at two through three ends, Jacobs took the lead with a single in the fourth end before stealing one in the fifth to take a 4-2 lead.

Koe cut the lead to one in the seventh before forcing the extra end with the steal in eight.

In the semifinal against Gushue, Jacobs trailed 3-2 through three ends before scoring four in the fourth end to take the lead for good.

After Gushue scored on in the fifth to cut the Jacobs lead to 6-4, Jacobs scored three in the sixth end to cap off the scoring.

After going unbeaten during the round robin, Mouat picked up a 4-2 win in the quarterfinal over Ross Whyte of Scotland before beating Brendan Bottcher of Edmonton 6-4 in semifinal action.

The Jacobs rink opened the triple knockout event with a 5-3 win over Yuta Matsumura in the final draw of day one on Tuesday.

After Jacobs opened the scoring with a single in the first end, the teams traded pairs in the following two ends before Matsumura tied the game at three with a single in the fifth end.

Jacobs capped off the win with a pair in the sixth end.

A 5-4 loss to Koe on Wednesday dropped the Jacobs rink into the B Event where the Sault-based rink rebounded with a 6-4 win over John Epping of Toronto on Thursday morning.

Against Koe, Jacobs held a 4-3 lead heading into the eighth end before Koe scored a pair to pick up the win.

Against Epping, Jacobs scored a pair in the seventh end to pick up the win.

The deuce by Jacobs came after Epping tied the game with a pair of his own in the sixth end.

The teams traded pairs in the early ends before Jacobs took the lead with steals of one each in the fourth and fifth ends to take a 4-2 lead at the time.

The Jacobs rink then beat Jason Gunnlaugson of Winnipeg 5-4 to cap off the round robin and grab a playoff spot in the process.

In the round robin finale, Jacobs scored a single in the eighth end to win after Gunnlaugson scored a pair with the hammer in the seventh to tie the game at four.

The Jacobs rink returns to action on Nov. 2 when the team begins play in the second Grand Slam of Curling event of the season, the National, in Chestermere, Alta.