In the blink of an eye, the Laura Walker rink showcased a killer instinct to keep its undefeated drive alive.
Walker produced a five-ender in the seventh to turn a 4-3 nailbiter into a 9-3 victory over St. Albert's Krysta Hilker to improve to 5-0 through five draws at the 2020 Sentinel Storage Alberta Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Okotoks, Friday afternoon at the Murray Arena.
"It just started with our lead (Nadine Scotland) making two absolutely perfect ticks, the first one she rolled into the rings and the second one she rolled to guard it," Walker said. "They were scrambling from there, we were able to split the rings and just kept hanging around, hanging around. They were trying to freeze and get something going and our rock placement was absolutely perfect on every single rock we threw that end.
"That's what led to us getting a big score."
Walker picked up three in the fourth end with Hilker chopping away with singles in the fifth and sixth before the game turned on a dime. The Hilker rink dropped to 3-2 in the standings with the loss.
"We feel really good. We've kind of been rolling since our first game, we had to come from behind in that one and that really built some confidence," Walker said. "We've been playing good enough, I don't think we've been anything spectacular, but we've been making the shots we need to make and supporting each other as teammates.
"And I think that's why we're 5-0."
With two draws left, the Walker rink is firmly in the playoff round and can do its seeding a world of good by extending its winning streak.
"For us we know that one win out of our next two it's probably going to get us into the 1-2 game," Walker said. "That's upping the intensity for us. We know we have to play really well still and win one of those next two.
"Also it keeps us rolling into the playoffs, we don't really want to let ourselves slip and then have to find that gear again in the playoffs. We would rather just keep it in high gear the whole time."
Lacombe's Marla Sherrer rink made it two wins in a row with a 7-6 triumph over Casey Scheidegger in a seesaw tilt. Both teams sit at 2-3 in the standings.
"We've actually played well all week. We had a really close game against Kelsey Rocque and the score didn't reflect it, but we played very well against Laura Walker as well," Sherrer said. "We're in a must win to stay alive here so string together as many as we can.
"We would have loved to win our first few and give ourselves a little bit of a cushion and a little more going into our next games. But I think this afternoon was a big win, we're still in it and have to grind for our next two."
Scheidegger had a chance with hammer in the tenth, but after a valiant effort from the sweepers, couldn't quite draw for the win.
"In the ninth end, Janais (DeJong) made a nice come around and then Casey came up short on here reassurance draw," Sherrer said. "We had a hit through the hole for three, but just got two out of it and she came up just short on the draw for the win. We got a little lucky there."
In other action, Edmonton's Kelsey Rocque rink bounced back from its first loss with a convincing 9-2 triumph over Jodi Vaughan. Rocque, now 4-1 in the standings, jumped out to a 5-1 advantage with a double in the second end and three in the third. Vaughan dropped to 1-4 with the loss. Also, the Nicky Kaufman rink picked up its first win of the competition with a 7-4 result over Calgary's Kayla Skrlik.
The sixth draw is 6:30 p.m.on Jan. 24. For the latest on the Scotties stay tuned to https://www.okotokstoday.ca/2020-alberta-scotties