March 9, 2019 9:00 am
Updated: March 9, 2019 11:16 am

Team Manitoba closes 2019 Tim Hortons Brier with early finish

Team Manitoba skip Mike McEwen makes a shot during the 18th draw against team British Columbia at the Brier in Brandon, Man. Friday, March 8, 2019.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
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Team Manitoba closed out a disappointing Brier with back-to-back victories on Friday in Brandon.

It was too little, too late for Manitoba’s Mike McEwen who was already knocked out of playoff contention on Thursday.

Manitoba completed the event with an 8-4 triumph over Ontario’s Scott McDonald in the final draw of the championship pool. That came after a 9-7 win over British Columbia’s Jim Cotter earlier on Friday. Manitoba finished with a 6-5 record, good for a tie for fifth place.

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“We’re just having trouble stringing together eight shots in an end,” McEwen said. “We seem to have one that wherever it is in the lineup that goes awry. We’re not far away, but it’s enough that we got a lot more battle wounds at this point in the week than we would have liked.”

READ MORE: Manitoba eliminated from playoff contention at the Brier

This was the first year together for the new look foursome of McEwen, Reid Carruthers, Derek Samagalski, and Colin Hodgson. And while they didn’t see the desired results this week, McEwen felt they just needed more experience as a group.

“We just need more time,” McEwen said. “If you look at how much time I had with my other team, we had a decade together. I think it took about a cycle for us to get there.”

WATCH: Raw Mike McEwen Interview – March 8

Alberta’s Kevin Koe, Northern Ontario’s Brad Jacobs, Team Canada’s Brad Gushue and the Wild Cards skipped by Brendan Bottcher all clinched playoff spots.

The Page Playoffs start at 2 pm on Saturday with the 3-vs-4 game between Team Canada and the Wild Cards. The loser will be eliminated, while the winner will advance to face the loser of the 1-vs-2 game between Alberta and Northern Ontario.

READ MORE: Northern Ontario’s Brad Jacobs in control at 2019 Tim Hortons Brier

The final is scheduled for 2 pm on Sunday at Westoba Place.

Final Championship Pool Standings

Team (Skip)
x-Alberta (K.Koe) 11-0
x-Northern Ontario (Jacobs) 9-2
x-Canada (Gushue) 9-2
x-Wild Card (Bottcher) 8-3
Ontario (S. McDonald) 6-5
Manitoba (McEwen) 6-5
Saskatchewan (K.Muyres) 5-6
British Columbia (Cotter) 4-7

x — clinched berth in Page playoffs

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