In many annals of sports strategy, logic holds that to be the man, you have to beat the man—or woman, as the case may be.
That proved to be too much for ask for the Tracy Horgan rink from the Idylwylde Golf and Country Club in Sudbury, which featured Devlin resident Jenna Enge at second, at the Ontario Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Thornhill.
Horgan couldn’t follow up on a solid week of round-robin play, which saw them finish second in the standings with a 7-2 record, losing both their playoff games.
That included a 7-5 loss in yesterday’s semi-final to Krista McCarville of the Fort William Curling Club in Thunder Bay.
Rachel Homan of Ottawa, in her first year of eligibility after winning the national junior championship and then silver at the world juniors last year, certified her team as the best of the bonspiel by ending McCarville’s reign as two-time defending champion with a 9-6 win in yesterday’s final.
Horgan looked to be in good shape after a deuce in the third put her up 3-1. But McCarville, a four-time winner of the provincials who finished third in the standings at 6-3, connected for three in the fourth before Horgan tied it on a single in the fifth.
A blank in the sixth was followed by a single in the seventh for McCarville, who then stole a key point in the eighth to lead 6-4.
Horgan only could manage a single with the hammer in the ninth to cut the lead to one, and McCarville profited from last rock with a single in the 10th to eliminate Horgan from further contention.
Homan had battered Horgan 12-4 in eight ends in the 1 vs. 2 Page Playoff game on Saturday, bookending the tour de force effort with a five-ender in the first and a handshake-inducing four-spot in the eighth.
It was a disappointing end to the week for Horgan, whose quartet won its last two round-robin games Friday to clinch second place.
First she beat up on Kristy Russell (Shelburne) 10-5. Then a big start propelled Horgan in her final preliminary game, scoring four in the first to pave her way to an eventual 10-7 triumph over Susan McKnight (Uxbridge).
McKnight still managed to earn a tie for the fourth and final playoff spot, then beat Lisa Farnell (Peterborough) in a tie-breaker on Saturday before falling later that day in the 3 vs. 4 game against McCarville.
Meanwhile, Stratton’s Jackie McCormick didn’t fare as well at the Scotties as her Thunder Bay-based team skipped by Ashley Kallos didn’t qualify for the playoffs by finishing tied for seventh with Marika Bakewell (London) at 3-6.
Kallos entered Friday facing an uphill battle as she sat one game out of a playoff spot at 3-4. She also had the misfortune of facing two must-win games against the eventual finalists and neither contest went in her favour.
Her Fort William clubmate, McCarville, squeaked out a 7-6 win, with the winning points coming on a deuce in the eighth.
Homan then built a 5-1 lead after six ends against Kallos and held on for a 7-4 victory.
Next up for Homan is a trip to Charlottetown, P.E.I. for the Scotties Tournament of Hearts national showdown Feb. 19-27.