Gushue beats Dunstone to advance to Brier final against familiar foe Bottcher

Gushue beats Dunstone to advance to Brier final against familiar foe Bottcher

Newfoundland and Labrador’s Brad Gushue defeated Saskatchewan’s Matt Dunstone 7-6 in Sunday’s semifinal at the Brier.

Gushue had hammer in the 10th end and drew to the back of the eight-foot ring for the win to advance to the evening final against Alberta’s Brendan Bottcher.

Bottcher is making his third straight appearance in the Brier final. He lost to Gushue in 2018 and fell to Kevin Koe last year.

Gushue won the national men’s curling championship for the first time in 2017.

Dunstone, who lost the 1-2 Page game to Bottcher on Saturday, started with hammer but settled for a single when his draw for two hung wide.

Gushue hit a tap for three in the second end but Dunstone pulled even with a deuce in the third.

Dunstone played a hit in the sixth end rather than a double-takeout for a blank. The single cut Gushue’s lead to 5-4.

Errors galore

Both thirds made unforced errors in the seventh. Saskatchewan’s Braeden Moskowy nearly flashed a stone while counterpart Mark Nichols had his hit roll out to set up a blank.

After Newfoundland and Labrador was forced to one, Saskatchewan made three mistakes in the ninth end. Second Catlin Schneider missed a double and Moskowy couldn’t get two hit-and-roll attempts to stay.

Dunstone made a game-saving double to sit one and got the deuce to pull even.

In the 10th, Dunstone’s first rock sat at the edge of the eight-foot under cover. The skips made freezes before Gushue threw the game winner to the delight of the packed house at the Leon’s Centre.

Dunstone, a two-time Canadian junior champion, made his Brier debut two years ago as vice-skip for Steve Laycock’s Saskatchewan rink.

Saskatchewan’s last Brier win came in 1980 when Rick Folk beat Northern Ontario’s Al Hackner.

Published at Sun, 08 Mar 2020 19:19:07 +0000