Faced with the prospect of having to play three times on Saturday to advance, Team Northern Ontario, represented by Sault Ste. Marie’s Brad Jacobs, came up just short.
The Jacobs rink, which includes third Marc Kennedy, second E.J. Harnden, lead Ryan Harnden, and alternate Lee Toner, dropped a 7-4 decision to Newfoundland and Labrador’s Brad Gushue in the Page 3-4 Playoff game at the 2020 Tim Hortons Brier on Saturday night in Kingston, Ont.
With the game tied at four through seven ends, Gushue picked up a single in the eighth end with the hammer to take the lead.
In the ninth end, Jacobs missed on his final shot of the end, allowing Gushue to steal one and take a 6-4 lead before capping off the game with another steal of one in the final end.
In a media scrum posted on the Curling Canada website, Jacobs said fatigue wasn’t a factor against Gushue.
“I’m just really proud of my team and the way that they hung in there all week,” Jacobs said. “It was a roller coaster ride this week, but we battled had and did everything we could to get ourselves right back in this.”
“Even though it wasn’t meant to be this year, I think we’re going to come out of this a lot stronger than ever,” Jacobs added.
To get into the game against Gushue, the Jacobs rink won a pair of tiebreakers earlier in the day.
Team Jacobs got into the Championship Pool of the nine-day event with a 4-3 record through round robin play and then won three of four to sit at 7-4 and in a four-way tie for the final playoff round spot.
The Jacobs rink proceeded to beat Team Canada, skipped by Calgary’s Kevin Koe, 8-3 in eight ends in the first set of tiebreaker games on Saturday morning.
Against Koe, the Jacobs rink broke a 3-3 tie with a pair in the seventh end before stealing three more in the eighth to cap off the win.
The win against Koe allowed the Jacobs rink to move on to a second tiebreaker game against Ontario’s John Epping in a game that featured the winners of the two earlier games.
Against Epping, Jacobs earned a playoff round berth thanks to an 8-4 win.
Leading 3-2 through five ends, Jacobs extended the lead with a pair in the sixth.
After Epping scored one in the seventh and stole another in the eighth, Jacobs sealed the win with a pair in the ninth end.