SaskTel Tankard Men's Provincial Championship Event Preview
SaskTel Tankard Men’s Provincial Curling Championship ~ Estevan, SK
Sixteen of the top men’s curlers in Saskatchewan will head south to Estevan and hit the ice in Affinity Place at the 2018 SaskTel Tankard Men’s Provincial Curling Championship! A very unique season in men’s playdowns for teams in our province, as we all know that the winner of this years provincial championship will have the honor of representing Saskatchewan on home soil at the 2018 Tim Hortons Brier, which will be hosted in Regina Mar. 3-11!!
Team deConinck Smith third Jeff Sharp (left) & lead Mark Larsen (right) at 2017 SaskTel Tankard Men’s Provincial Championship (Photo, Devan Tasa/Tisdale Recorder).
Team Josh Heidts third Kody Hartung, calling line during the 2017 SaskTel Tankard Men’s Provincial Championship (Photo, Devan Tasa/Tisdale Recorder).
Veterans Mixed with New Faces in this Years Field
Many former provincial champions will accompany the numerous curlers come January 31 in Estevan, but this year with a few new lineup changes as playdowns got underway back in October!
Steve Laycock added Matt Dunstone to their lineup this season, as former second Colton Flasch took on Bruce Kortes former team and joined forces with Kevin Marsh, Dan Marsh & Trent Knapp, who are one of the top men’s team on the Canadian Team Ranking System!
Meanwhile, a few players fresh out of juniors or who have recently competed in junior playdowns found themselves a spot in this past weekends North & South qualifying events! Team Brady Kendel & Daniel Selke are two young teams fresh out of juniors with many former provincial champions taking on new roles on each team! Then we have Team Brayden Stewart out of the Saskatoon Sutherland Curling Club, who were semi finalists in this years junior provincial championship which was held at the Regina Callie one month ago!
Great to see so many talented teams getting ready to battle it out in what we hope to be in front of good crowds down in Estevan. Let’s take a peek below at the teams competing next week:
SaskTel Tankard Men’s Provincial Teams
Team Colton Flasch ~ Saskatoon Nutana
The newly formed team finished first among SK teams on the CTRS Standings, following a big WCT win at the College Clean Restoration Curling Classic.
Team Steve Laycock ~ Saskatoon Nutana
Laycock and team had a great year on tour making final appearances in the Golden Wrench Classic in Phoenix, along with the Sask Tour Players Championship.
Team Adam Casey ~ Regina Highland
The defending champions had a great year to date with a big win at the Sask Tour Player’s Championship & finalists in the U.S. Asham Open.
Team Josh Heidt ~ Kerrobert
Heidt is back with the same foursome, making the playoffs in three WCT events, including a top five finish at the Grand Slam of Curling Tier 2 Challenge back in September.
Team Carl deConinck Smith ~ Rosetown
A busy year on tour for deConinck Smith, where they finished third in two WCT events including the Grand Slam of Curling Tier 2 Challenge.
Team Jason Jacobson ~ Saskatoon Nutana
Jason formed a brand new team, including former junior champions in Jake & Quinn Heriskorn. The team claimed the direct berth after being the top team on the SCT this year!
Team Brent Gedak ~ Estevan
Gedak earned their direct berth this season during their play at the first SCT event of the year in Saskatoon, as they were finalists in the Saskatoon Nutana SCT Cash Spiel.
Team Ryan Deis ~ Fox Valley
Former champions Ryan & Scott Manners added Jason Barnhart at second, where they captured a direct berth after their second straight Regina Highland SCT Spiel win back in November!
Team Scott Bitz ~ Saskatoon Sutherland
Former provincial champion Scott Bitz and team captured first place in the Estevan SCT Spiel earlier this season, giving them a direct berth into this years Tankard.
Team Jeff Hartung ~ Langenburg
Team Hartung received their spot into this years provincial with a win in the Farmers Edge SCT spiel in Wadena back in December.
Team Brock Virtue ~ Kerrobert
Team Virtue competed in last years provincial event, but now have former champ Brock Virtue throwing skip rocks. They qualified out of the Northern playdowns last weekend.
Team Brady Kendel ~ Saskatoon Sutherland
A newly formed team headed into this season, as they received a berth into the Tankard grabbing the second spot out of the Northern playdowns.
Team Aaron Shutra – Saskatoon Nutana
Team Shutra made a semi final appearance last season at the Saskatoon SCT spiel, and qualified through the Northern playdowns into this years Tankard.
Team Brayden Stewart ~ Saskatoon Sutherland
Team Stewart lost this years junior provincial semi final, and had a great run picking up the final spot into the Tankard out of the Northern playdowns.
Team Randy Bryden ~ Regina Callie
Bryden & long time third Troy Robinson with a bit of a new look at front end, where they picked up the first spot out of the Southern qualifier playdowns.
Team Daniel Selke ~ Regina Callie
Another brand new team heading into this season, as they made a semi final appearance in the Moose Jaw SCT spiel, including the second spot out of the Southern qualifier playdowns.