01/04/2018 18:20 EST | Updated 01/04/2018 18:24 EST

Gallant, Peterson improve to 8-0 through mixed curling trials round robin

PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE, Man. — Brett Gallant and Jocelyn Peterman defeated Reid Carruthers and Jill Officer 8-2 to finish the round robin unbeaten Thursday at the Canadian mixed curling championship.

Gallant and Peterman needed seven ends to secure the win in the 17th draw and finish atop Pool A with an 8-0 record.  Mark Nichols and Jennifer Jones finished second in the standings with a 6-2 record after downing Robert Desjardins and Emile Desjardins 8-4 over seven ends in the 17th draw.

Geoff Walker and Laura Crocker finished their Pool B round robin also with an 8-0 record after rallying to down Brad Gushue and Val Sweeting  9-8 in the 16th draw. Walker and Crocker erased an 8-5 deficit with three in the eighth before registering one in the ninth for the victory.

Earlier, Walker and Crocker beat Brendan Bottcher and Dana Ferguson 9-6 in the 14th draw in a battle of then unbeaten rinks. Bottcher and Ferguson (6-1) had already clinched second in Pool B heading into their draw 18 matchup against John Epping and Sherry Middaugh (2-5).

The winner of the tournament will represent Canada when mixed curling doubles makes its debut at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games.

The first- and second-place team in each pool will advance along with the next four teams in the overall standings. Tiebreakers and the opening round of the playoffs begin Friday and the final is scheduled for Sunday.

The Pyeongchang Games are scheduled for Feb. 9-25.