Morning Star Staff
One really bad end cost Vernon’s Team John Morris a chance at moving on at the $100,000 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling’s Tour Challenge in Cranbrook.
Eventual Challenge champion Niklas Edin of Sweden stole six in the sixth end to post a 9-1 quarterfinal win over Team Morris Saturday at Western Financial Place, eliminating the Vernon quartet who entered the playoffs as the top seed after going 4-0 in the preliminary round.
Morris, with Vernon’s Jim Cotter throwing final stones, jumped out to a 1-0 lead with hammer in the opening end against the Swedes.
After blank ends in two and three, Edin made a beautiful angle raise shot with his last stone in four to score three and take a 3-1 lead.
Following another blank in the fifth, Morris and company fell into deep trouble in the sixth.
With Edin sitting six, Cotter’s last rock crashed on a guard and rolled out, allowing the big steal.
Edin advanced to the playoffs with a tiebreaker win earlier Saturday against Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
Edin won his second straight Grand Slam event with a 7-3 win over Scotland’s Kyle Smith, collecting the $30,000 first prize cheque.
The Swedes advanced to the final with a 6-4 semifinal win over Newfoundland/Labrador’s Mark Nichols and Team Gushue.
Smith made it an all-European final with a 6-5 semifinal win over Norway’s Thomas Ulsrud.
Val Sweeting of Edmonton won the women’s title in Cranbrook, downing Michelle Englot of Winnipeg 8-4.
The Tier 2 winners were Greg Baldson of Kingston, Ont. for the men, and Jacqueline Harrison of Mississauga, Ont. for the women.
Vernon’s Jamie Sexton threw third stones for Vancouver’s Stephen Schneider in the Tier 2 draw.
The rink went 1-3, picking up its only win, a 6-5 decision, over William Lyburn of Winnipeg.
Schneider fell 7-2 to Tom Brewster of Scotland, dropped a 6-3 decision to Dean Joanisse of Maple Ridge and ended the event with an 8-7 loss to Mark Bice of Sarnia, Ont.