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“I know he would be so proud. This is something he knew we had in us,” Lawes said. “I thought about him a lot during the game … I wish I could share this experience with him. He was my inspiration.”

The championship means Canada’s women curlers have finally stepped out of the shadow of their men’s teams, who have won gold at the last two Olympics and will go for another on Friday against Britain.

As for Jones, who just 18 months ago was laid up after knee surgery and pregnant with her first baby, the debate has just started as to where she lies in the pantheon of great female curlers. Only Canada’s Kevin Martin has led a team undefeated through an Olympic campaign, in 2010.

Does this make Jones the greatest?

“I would completely, 100 percent, agree,” teammate Jill Officer said. “I’ve felt that a long time.”

Britain beat Switzerland 6-5 earlier Thursday to win the bronze medal.