Friday, February 22, 2013

Alberta at the bottom looking up

Aside from the big story this week of three top teams vying for the title in Jennnifer Jones, Rachel Homan and Heather Nedohin, the glaring story from the Scotties is the horrendous record of the Alberta foursome. The squad from Grand Prairie is tied at the bottom of the standings with a 1-8 mark.

Fred Rinne, the very capable Alberta writer from Grand Prairie, home of the Kristie Moore rink, pens an article detailing the awful performance of the squad, trying to paint somewhat of a positive picture.

 Defending champ Heather Nedohin is here, many curling fans in the Wild Rose province consider her the provincial rep moreso than Moore. 
That Nedohin’s team is playing well, just one loss at press time, is no surprise.That Moore would be the last winless team at the Kingston party, is. 
Enter Renee Sonnenberg and credit her longtime teammate Moore for recognizing the need. 
It takes a big “non-ego” to do that. 
It’s not the flu. 
It’s not any other reason, other than it needed to be. 
On the largest stage under the spotlight of the Canadian curling faithful, Kristie Moore put her team, her fans, her friends, and her city, ahead of herself. 
 “I was mentally exhuasted. I was trying to do too much out there. I was trying to do it all and you can’t do it all by yourself.”

Tim Baines of the Ottawa Sun also offered up some Moore quotes, and how the skipper is trying to stay positive.
“Everything had gone wrong,” said Moore. “It hasn’t been one real thing. We’ve only been together really since the middle of September. You’ve just got to be patient. Every team struggles. Unfortunately for us, it was here, at the big show. I’ve struggled in a couple of games.” 
Moore is trying to stay upbeat. 
“We're not that far off,” she said. “I was totally relaxed today. My draw weight was just elusive and that gos ut into trouble. It’s not like we played terrible. We were just the wrong side of the inch, just like we were the first few games. We’re just trying to ride it out and play some good games.”
Ah the dreaded wrong side of the inch. You knew that was coming, right? That has to be the worst line in curling. And how come you never hear a team that's winning talking about being in the right side of the inch? I digress.

Alberta's woes highlight the risks of the looming relegation. While no team wants to face relegation, I'm sure the CCA and organizers would dread losing a big-province squad to the field through this system. Nunavut or Alberta? Which do you think would sell more tickets or draw more TV eyeballs?

Of course having a bad week doesn't mean a team is out -- it still gets to go through the challenge ahead of the following year's event. But a bad week from Moore shows that anyone is at risk.

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