Smallwood goes undefeated at curling championships

The Whitehorse curling rink kept their season-long win streak going at the Yukon Men’s Curling Championships and grabbed the territory’s spot at the Brier qualifier next month in Calgary.

Team Smallwood is Brier bound.

The Whitehorse curling rink kept their season-long win streak going at the Yukon Men’s Curling Championships and grabbed the territory’s spot at the Brier qualifier next month in Calgary.

“It feels good. Got butterflies in the stomach and it’s off to the Brier again,” said skip Robert Smallwood. “It’s been a while since I’ve been there, so hopefully we’ll do well in the relegation round.”

Team Smallwood went 5-0 in the round-robin format championships over the weekend at the Whitehorse Curling Club.

But it was no walk in the park; Smallwood finished with two extra-end wins.

The team clinched the title with a 7-6 win over Team Hilderman in the 11-end after dropping a 4-0 lead.

“They gathered momentum from the two-ender that they scored and they managed to capitalize on another end and got another two,” said Smallwood. “It threw me off my game a little bit, but I managed to struggle through it.”

Had Smallwood dropped the game, they would have faced defending champ Team Paslawski in a tiebreaker Sunday afternoon. Team Paslawski, led by skip Pat Paslawski, placed second with a 4-1 record over the weekend. Walter Wallingham’s team, George Hilderman’s team and Ray Mikkelsen’s team each went 2-3 at the championships. Tyler Williams’ team went winless.

Team Smallwood also won 9-4 over Wallingham, 7-2 over Paslawski, 9-4 over Mikkelsen and 10-8 over Williams in an extra end.

On board with Smallwood is third Wade Scoffin, second Steve Fecteau, lead Clint Ireland and fifth Scott Odian.

“This weekend we had a five-person team, so we mixed it up a little bit on the bottom end,” said Smallwood. “We swapped out a player here and there throughout the weekend. It worked, we ended up winning.”

Team Smallwood will face Nova Scotia, P.E.I. and N.W.T. in the new pre-qualifier event added to the national championship this year, the Brier event office told the News on Monday. (There will no longer be a playdown between Yukon and N.W.T. for a position at the Brier.) Following a round robin, the two top teams will play a deciding game during the first draw of the Brier on Feb. 28. The winner will move into the main draw and will start with a game against Team Ontario in the evening.

“P.E.I. and Nova Scotia have both had good curlers come out of their province,” said Smallwood. “I think our chances are fair. If we curl the way we can curl, I think we’re going to make it.”

Smallwood competed at the Brier in 1994 and 1995, the latter with Odian, coming home with two wins each time. Scoffin has been to three Briers so far in his career. Smallwood and his wife Jody have represent Yukon at the Canadian Mixed Curling Championships the last two years. In November their team, which included Scoffin, produced a 5-4 record at the mixed nationals for the best performance by a Yukon rink at the championship since at least 2000.

Team Smallwood also went undefeated at the Polar Eyes Optometry Cashspiel at the end of November.

Team Koltun will make another run at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts – the national women’s championship – next month in Moose Jaw, Sask.

The Whitehorse rink was the only women’s team to register for the Yukon Women’s Curling Championships and thereby earned the territory’s spot in the qualifier for the 2015 Scotties. The team includes skip Sarah Koltun, third Chelsea Duncan, second Patty Wallingham, lead Jenna Duncan, fifth Lindsay Moldowan and coach Bill Tschirhart.

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Yukon government was wrong in evicting youth from a group home, commissioner finds

The health department has roughly two months to respond to recommendations

Stephanie Dixon ready to dive into new role as chef de mission for 2019 Parapan American Games and 2020 Paralympic Games

“You do it because you believe in yourself and you have people around you that believe in you”

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

Whitehorse becomes first community north of 60 to have private pot shop

Triple J’s Canna Space opens its doors to first customers

Whitehorse council news, briefly

Some of the news that came out of Whitehorse city council this week

Snowmobiles and snow bikes descend on Mount Sima for Yukon Yamaha Uphill Challenge

“I think everyone had their eyes opened on what could be done there”

Yukon Orienteering Association starts Coast Mountain Sports Sprint Series off in the right direction

The race on April 11 was the first of five sprint races planned for the spring

Yukon gymnasts stick the landing at inaugural B.C. Junior Olympic Compulsory Championships

Seven Polarettes earned five podium finishes at the two-day event in Langley, B.C.

École Émilie-Tremblay hosts first Yukon elementary school wrestling meet of 2019

“You can grab kids and you can trip and you can do that rough play, but there are rules”

Driving with Jens: Survey says….

If you’re like me, you probably feel inundated with surveys. It seems… Continue reading

Editorial: Promising electoral reform is the easy part

Details of what that would actually look like are much harder to come by

Yukonomist: The centre of the business universe moves 4,000 k.m. northwest

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business named Whitehorse Canada’s top place to start and grow a business

Whitehorse starts getting ready for Japanese students

This summer 13 Japanese students are slated to come north

Most Read