Glenn Howard remains unbeaten at Tour Challenge with win over Steve Laycock

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PARADISE, N.L. — Glenn Howard toppled Steve Laycock 7-2 on Thursday evening to remain unbeaten at the inaugural Tour Challenge at the Paradise Double Ice Complex.

Howard, from Penetanguishene, Ont., held a 3-2 advantage on the Saskatoon native before scoring four in the sixth end to seal the victory.

Earlier in the day Howard edged Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., 6-5, running his record to 3-0 through nine draws of the first Grand Slam of Curling event of the season. Howard scored three points in the eighth end to beat the Olympic champion.

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Also in evening play, Brad Gushue of St. John’s, N.L., needed only four ends to hammer Charlottetown’s Adam Casey 8-1. And Jacobs bounced back with a 6-0 four-end victory over Switzerland’s Sven Michel.  

Howard currently sits in a three-way tie for first with Winnipeg skips Reid Carruthers and Mike McEwen, who have identical records. Gushue, Jacobs, Edmonton’s Brendan Bottcher and Calgary’s Kevin Koe are tied for fourth with 2-1 records.

In women’s evening matchups, Ottawa’s Rachel Homan kept pace with Sherry Middaugh atop the standings with a 7-0 win over Edmonton’s Kelsey Roque in Draw 9.

Homan scored at least one point in every end, including three in the fourth to run her record to 3-0. Middaugh, from Coldwater, Ont., is also 3-0 after downing Calgary’s Chelsea Carey 5-4 in afternoon action.

Switzerland’s Silvana Tirinzoni also picked up a win in Draw 9, scoring a deuce in an extra end to beat Tracy Fleury of Sudbury, Ont., 9-7.

Tirinzoni trailed 7-6 in the eighth end, but scored a single to force a ninth.

Carey, Tirinzoni, Roque and Scotland’s Eve Muirhead have 2-1 records, leaving them in a four-way tie for third.

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The $200,000 competition is a two-tier event featuring 30 men’s and 30 women’s teams. Round-robin play continues on Friday.

The Canadian Press

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