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Gushue, Strong both have 2-0 starts at provincial curling championships

Lead Kate Cooper (left) and second Sarah Day sweep a shot by skip Heather Strong (background) during their opening game against Stacie Curtis in the provincial women’s curling championships at Bally Haly Golf and Curling Club Thursday. Awaiting the shot is third Stephanie Guzzwell. Strong won 7-5.
Lead Kate Cooper (left) and second Sarah Day sweep a shot by skip Heather Strong (background) during their opening game against Stacie Curtis in the provincial women’s curling championships at Bally Haly Golf and Curling Club Thursday. Awaiting the shot is third Stephanie Guzzwell. Strong won 7-5.

Defending champion Brad Gushue had little trouble in winning his first two games in the Tankard provincial men’s curling playdowns Thursday.

On his home ice at the Bally Haly Golf and Curling Club in St. John’s, Gushue opened the competition with a 7-2 win over Adam Boland and followed up with an 7-1 victory over Trent Skanes in the evening draw.
The Gushue rink stole a total of eight points in the two games.

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In other matchups Thursday, Paul Harvey stole three points in the eighth end as he and his rinkmates overcame an 4-1 deficit for an 8-5 win over Colin Thomas, and Boland bounced back to beat Thomas 10-3 in the second draw.
Gushue has skipped 10 straight Tankard winners and 13 overall, which is just one more provincial championship than Heather Strong owns.
Strong is also 2-0 in the Scotties provincial women’s competition, being held concurrently with the men’s championship at Bally Haly.
Strong’s first win Thursday saw her defeat two-time defending champion Stacie Curtis 7-5. She then posted a 10-4 victory over Shelly Miller.
Curtis scored five times in the last two ends — including a steal of three in the 10th — for a 9-5 win over Beth Hamilton in the second draw, while Shelley Hardy — another former champ — won her only game of the day, scoring three in an extra end for a 10-7 victory over Hamilton.
There will be five draws in the two round-robin competitions, with the last coming Saturday morning. All the teams competing at Bally Haly are from St. John’s and all, except for Gushue, curl out of the Re/Max Centre.

bmcc@thetelegram.com
 

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