The Tim Horton’s Brier, the Canadian men’s curling championship, was in Brandon, Man., from March 2 to 10 and Team Yukon finished with a 3-4 record in pool play.
Representing the Yukon this year were skip Jon Solberg, lead Scott Odian, second Clint Abel, third Robert Smallwood and alternate David Rach.
Team Yukon, placed in pool ‘A’, got off to a slow start conceding the opening draw to Quebec 11-2 on March 2.
The team narrowly lost to Saskatchewan 6-5 in the first of two draws on March 3 and regrouped to team Newfoundland 8-4 later that day.
On March 4, the Yukoners picked up another win. This time, they dispatched Team Manitoba led by skip Mike McEwen 7-6.
Team Yukon then took on the wild card team — skipped by Albertan Brendan Bottcher — on March 5 and conceded 10-3, running the Yukoners’ record to 2-3.
Solberg and company then faced Prince Edward Island, winning a nail-biter 8-7.
Sitting at 3-3, a spot in the top four of the pool, a ticket to the championship pool was very much in play as they took on the undefeated Team Northern Ontario in the final draw of pool play on March 6.
Northern Ontario won the match 10-5 to finish at the top of the pool and push Team Yukon into sixth place at 3-4.
In the championship pool, Alberta, Northern Ontario, Canada and the wild card advanced to the playoffs.
In the one-versus-two match, Alberta beat Northern Ontario to advance directly to the final.
Bottcher’s wild card team beat Brad Gushue’s Team Canada 7-2 in the three-versus-four match to advance to the semifinal.
Bottcher’s team then beat Northern Ontario 5-4 in the semifinal to setup a final against Team Alberta.
In the all-Alberta final, Kevin Koe’s Team Alberta beat Bottcher’s wild card team 4-3 to win this year’s championship.
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