News Players' Championship

Homan escapes with win over Lawes at Princess Auto Players’ Championship

TORONTO — Rachel Homan stole single points in the final three ends to swipe a 6-4 victory over Kaitlyn Lawes on Wednesday afternoon in the Princess Auto Players’ Championship at Mattamy Athletic Centre.

Homan’s Ottawa club levelled their record to 1-1 in the round-robin portion of the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling major tournament while Lawes’ team from Winnipeg is at 2-1.

“It’s always nice to win a tight battle,” said Tracy Fleury, who throws third stones and handles skip duties for Team Homan. “There were a lot of good shots made by both teams. It was a good game.”

Rachel Brown is subbing for Team Homan lead Sarah Wilkes, who is expecting a baby, and Fleury is happy to have the three-time Grand Slam champion on board this week.

“She brings a good, fun energy,” Fleury said. “She’s so positive and she makes a lot of shots. She’s a good spare to have, for sure.”

The team is still counting on Wilkes, who has been on the bench for their games — even throughout the nervous moments.

“It’s nice that she was able to come here and support us from the bench,” Fleury said. “She knows the game so well, so it’s nice to be able to draw on her experience here this week.”

Lawes looked to be in control of the match scoring a deuce in the fourth end to lead 4-2 at the break.

Homan was held to a single in the fifth as her shooter was unable to make it through the wall of guards but promoted one of her own stones in to score.

That’s when it turned into an express route on the steal train as Lawes was unable to make a double takeout in the sixth that tied it up and then conceded the lead in the seventh by jamming in a messy house.

Lawes was able to navigate through a tight port with her last rock of the game in an attempt to grab the equalizer for an extra end, however, when it stopped it was too close to call and a measurement awarded the point to Homan.

Elsewhere, Winnipeg’s Jennifer Jones scored four in the fourth, stole one in the fifth and two in the sixth during a 9-6 victory over Tabitha Peterson from the United States. It was the first win of the event for Jones (1-2).

Peterson (1-1) called upon coach/super spare Cathy Overton-Clapham to play lead with Tara Peterson absent.

In men’s play, Ross Whyte (2-0) scored two in the eighth to lift his Scottish side to a 3-2 win over Winnipeg’s Reid Carruthers (1-2).

Norway’s Magnus Ramsfjell (1-1) stole away the second half to win 8-3 over Korey Dropkin (0-3) from the United States.

Ramsfjell broke a 3-3 tie with a steal of two in the fifth then pirated another pair of points in the sixth plus one more in the seventh.


One more draw is on tap Wednesday with round-robin play continuing at 7 p.m. local time. Tickets are available at the box office and online at

Broadcast coverage begins Thursday at 11:30 a.m. ET / 8:30 a.m. PT on Sportsnet, Sportsnet NOW (Canada) and Yare (international).

NOTES: The Princess Auto Players’ Championship features 12 of the top men’s teams and 12 of the top women’s teams from around the world based on the World Curling Federation’s year-to-date world team rankings. … Round-robin play runs through to Friday with teams playing five games in their pool. The best six teams overall qualify for Saturday’s playoffs with the top two receiving byes to the semifinals. Both finals are scheduled for Sunday. … The Pinty’s Cup will also be awarded to the season champions in the series during the event.