Extra End Thriller To Determine Champions!
The Saskatoon Nutana Curling Club was a busy place this past week as they were host to the 2017 Canadian Mixed Doubles Curling Championship! The top mixed doubles duos from across the country battled all week long for the right to represent Canada on home soil April 22-29 in Lethbridge, Alberta!
The final game saw Joanne Courtney/Reid Carruthers take on Rachel Homan/John Morris Sunday afternoon providing fans a game to remember! Both teams trading scores back and forth all game long, with Homan/Morris needing a single point in the final end to take this one to an extra end! In the extra, Homan/Morris desperately looking to hide and secure their single point, forcing Courtney to make a tough pick with her last to secure the win. And she made it perfectly, scoring three points, and earning the 9-6 championship win! Congratulations and good luck to Courtney & Carruthers at the World Championship!
Left to right: Scott Comfort (Curling Canada Board of Governor), Reid Carruthers, John Morris, Joanne Courtney, Rachel Homan
Left to right: Marliese Kasner, Dustin Kalthoff
Strong Showing for SK Teams
Saskatchewan was well represented at this years event, with five teams providing a great showing to home town fans at the Nutana Curling Club.
The Sherry Just/Ryan Deis rink along with last years Team Canada duo in Marliese Kasney/Dustin Kalthoff found themselves in the Round of 12 once playoff time rolled around. It was Kasner/Kalthoff pulling off a 7-5 win over the Manitoba champions in Shannon Birchard/Jason Gunnlaugson, advancing them to face off against Homan/Morris. It was Homan/Morris jumping out to a large lead as they secured a 5-2 lead heading into the break, but Kasner/Kalthoff fought their way back with a score of three followed by a steal of one, making this a close one 7-6 heading into the final end. But Homan/Morris scored their single with hammer to make the final 8-6.
The Just/Deis rink had a great run in pool play finishing tied at the top of Pool C with Chelsea Carey/Colin Hodgson at 6-1. This earned Just/Deis a direct berth into the quarter finals matchup, where they met up with Carey/Hodgson once again. An overall great gameby these two squads, where it was a 3-2 game in favour of Carey/Hodgson heading into the break. A tough steal by Carey/Hodgson in the 5th & 6th ends earned them a 5-4 lead heading into the final end, where they scored the single to take the 6-4 final.
Other Saskatchewan teams in action over the weekend were the rink of Nancy Martin/Catlin Schneider where they finished pool play with a record of 3-4, which was just shy of reaching a tiebreaker game. Martin/Schneider had a fantastic year on the Mixed Doubles Tour, with solid finishes at the Canad Inns Mixed Doubles Classic (quarter final appearance) as well asa championship victory in Seattle at the Pacific Northwest Mixed Doubles Invitational!
Left to right: Ryan Deis, Sherry Just
Left to right: Catlin Schneider, Nancy Martin
Team Sask finsishes with 2-5 record
What a year it was for the young rink of Schwartz/Wills in the mixed doubles scene. Fairly new to the format, being junior ages curlers, and having a wonderful experience in playing against the top teams in the country, represented our province very well and should be proud of the season they accomplished! Schwartz/Wills won the 2017 Provincial Championship back in February, and played well at their first national competition together. They strung together two solid wins against Katie Cottrill,Shawn Cottril from Ontario (8-5), and Sarah Lamswood/Ryan Lamswood from Newfoundland (7-6).
Great week for Team Saskatchewan!
The fifth and final team from Saskatchewan was the 2013 Provincial Mixed Doubles Champions in Ashley Quick/Mike Armstrong.The team got off to a 1-4 start, but strung together two big wins against Kaitlyn Lawes/Ryan Fry 10-3, as well as a win against Helen Strong/Wade Scoffin 7-1. But unfortunately lost a very close final pool play game to the Jenn Baxter/Mark Dacey rink out of Nova Scotia 9-8.
The 2017 World Mixed Doubles Championship will decide the seven countries that will join the other remaining participants in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. The combined results of the 2016 and 2017 world championships will decide the teams, and Canada’s Kasner/Kalthoff placed fifth last year in Karlstad, Sweden!
Photos Courtesy of Curling Canada
Left to right: Mackenzie Schwarts, Sam Wills
Left to right: Ashley Quick, Mike Armstrong