OTTAWA — Brad Gushue calls it one of the worst picked rocks in his career.
Facing three Brad Jacobs’ stones in the third end, Gushue’s last shot picked debris on the ice and came to a screeching halt.
It led to a steal of three for Jacobs. It gave him a 4-0 lead. Game over. Jacobs cruised to the 7-4 victory Monday night at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa.
“In an event of this magnitude and a game of that magnitude, you never want to see something like that,” said the winning skip, Jacobs.
“I actually said as I went to the bench I can’t remember I’ve seen something like that.”
And neither can Gushue.
“That was tough. It’s going to sting tonight,” he said. “It’s early in the week so this loss is not taking us out. But if we miss out by a game you might look back and think your Olympic hopes went out on a hair. That’s frustrating.”
Match Wrap: Brad Gushue falls victim to picked rock in loss to Brad Jacobs1:31
Gushue’s team wasn’t about to give up after going down 4-0. They bounced back with a two in the second, making it 4-2 heading to the fifth end.
But Jacobs wasn’t going to give Gushue any other opportunities to mount a comeback for the rest of the game. The win moves the northern Ontario team into third place in the standings.
“We’re 2-1 right now and we’re in a great spot. I love what I’m seeing from my teammates,” Jacobs said.
Not done yet
As devastating as Monday night’s loss was, Gushue isn’t panicking. In fact, he says he likes the way his team responded after the picked rock.
“I thought we played a hell of a game for the situation we faced. It’s a different game if that rock doesn’t pick,” he said.
Gushue also credited Jacobs for giving his team no room to comeback in the game.
Skip Brad Jacobs, of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., defeated Brad Gushue on Monday at the Olympic curling trials. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
With four games left and a 2-2 record, Gushue knows his team has to go on a run if they want to make it to the playoffs in Ottawa.
“We have to grind it out now. This makes it a little harder,” he said.
Gushue says running the table would nearly guarantee them a playoff spot if they were to finish with a 6-2 record. But his focus now is on his next game Tuesday night against Reid Carruthers of Manitoba.
Beers solve everything
It was a pivotal win for Jacobs, who was coming off a loss Sunday morning. The loss was fine, however, it was how it happened that was the problem.
Jacobs threw his last shot through the house in an extra end against Kevin Koe. He called it embarrassing after the game and took full ownership over it.
“I think it shows a lot about our team that we were able to park that loss and get the win tonight.”
But to get over the initial sting, the team headed to the Patch to drink off the loss Sunday.
“We had a few beers at the Patch. We had afternoon beers and just let it go. When you have a really devastating moment like that, a couple beers makes you feel better in a hurry,” he said.
Jacobs is the reigning Olympic champion and is now getting set for his next game Tuesday afternoon against Steve Laycock of Saskatoon.
As for the beer drinking after the win over Gushue?
“No beer tonight,” Jacobs said.
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