Jackson’s playoff hopes dashed

Lorne Jackson’s outside chance of earning a playoff berth at the Northern Ontario men’s playdowns at Kapuskasing were dashed yesterday afternoon with a 7-5 loss to Tom Armstrong (Kirkland Lake).
But the Fort Frances rink salvaged the day with a 8-7 win over Rob Gordon (Cobalt-Haileybury) in the evening draw to improve their record to 2-5 heading into today’s final draws of the round-robin.
Jackson’s crew, which includes third Don DeBenedet, second Derek Jackson, and lead Wayne Beacham, had the bye this morning, then closed out play this afternoon against Al Harnden (Sault Ste. Marie).
That outcome wasn’t available by press time.
In yesterday afternoon’s draw, Jackson saw a 4-3 lead vanish in the seventh end when Armstrong scored three. The Kirkland Lake rink then stole one in the eighth to seal the victory.
Against Gordon, Jackson stole two in the second and fourth ends to go up 5-2. Gordon replied with three in the fifth to tie the game, and then one in the ninth to grab a 7-6 lead.
But Jackson scored a deuce with the hammer in the 10th to pull out the win.
Ron Rosengren (Fort William), whose team includes Fort Frances native Rob Sinclair Jr. and Atikokan’s Dale Wiersema, secured first place after beating Harnden 6-2 this morning.
They can finish with a perfect 8-0 record if they can beat Tim Phillips (Sudbury) this afternoon.
Meanwhile, defending champ Al Hackner (Fort William), who beat Dave MacInnes (Timmins) 9-1 this morning to improve to 5-2, can nail down second place with a victory this afternoon over Gordon.
Heading into the final round-robin draw, Armstrong, Harnden, and Phillips were tied for third at 4-3.
Brad Minogue (North Bay), at 3-4, has an outside chance at a tie-breaker for a playoff berth if he beats Armstrong this afternoon.
The top four teams advance to the playoffs, with first place playing second and third versus fourth. The winner of first vs. second advances to the final Saturday night while the loser will meet the winner of third vs. fourth for the right to advance to the final.
The winner moves on to the Nokia Brier in Calgary next month.