Yukon/NWT earns spot in curling playoffs

Jamie Koe's rink representing Yukon and Northwest Territories joined Ontario, Alberta and Manitoba in the playoffs at the Canadian men's curling championship.

First team from North to make Canadian men’s championship playoffs since 1980

NWT/Yukon skip Jamie Koe, centre, watches his shot as second Brad Chorostkowski, left, and lead Robert Borden sweep during a morning draw against New Brunswick at the Tim Hortons Brier in Saskatoon, Sask., on Thursday. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

Jamie Koe’s rink representing Yukon and Northwest Territories joined Ontario, Alberta and Manitoba in the playoffs at the Canadian men's curling championship.

N.W.T. beat B.C.'s Jim Cotter 8-3 to capture the fourth and final playoff berth.

It's the first time since playoff games were introduced to the Brier format in 1980 that a Northwest Territories team has made the playoffs.

Don Twa's Northwest Territories team finished tied for runner-up in 1975 when the event was a round-robin format.

Koe, whose Yellowknife team finished 7-4, joins brother and Alberta skip Kevin in the final four and will face him in a Page playoff between the third and fourth seeds Saturday.

Ontario's Glenn Howard (9-2) and Manitoba's Rob Fowler (8-3) meet in Friday's playoff between the top two seeds. The winner goes directly to Sunday's final. The loser drops to the semifinal and faces the winner of Koe versus Koe.

Alberta lost 6-3 to Ontario in the final draw of the preliminary round Thursday, which dropped Kevin Koe's team to third at 8-3.