Yukon curlers win gold at Pacific International Cup

Team Dorosz finished with just one loss en route winning the women’s championship

It was a golden weekend for one of the four Yukon teams at the 20th annual Pacific International Cup from April 17 to 21.

Held at the Richmond Curling Club in Richmond, B.C., the bonspiel included 16 men’s teams and 16 women’s teams from Canada, the United States, Australia, Brazil and India.

Team Dorosz — comprised of Peggy Dorosz, Laini Klassen, Kandice Braga and Inge Brown — won the women’s competition while Team Eby — made up of Laura Eby, Lorna Spenner, Tamar Vandenberghe, Laura Williamson and Janine Peters — won bronze.

Both the men’s and women’s divisions were split into two pools, with a Yukon team in each pool.

In the women’s red pool, Team Dorosz finished second with a 6-1 record. The lone loss came in the team’s second draw against Cowichan Rocks.

Team Eby, meanwhile, was second in the women’s blue pool with a 5-2 record.

In the first semifinal, Team Dorosz matched up against Nanaimo — the winners of the blue pool — with the Yukoners winning 7-4.

Team Eby faced off with Cowichan Rocks in the second semifinal, losing 7-5 and moving into the bronze medal draw.

Team Dorosz defeated Cowichan Rocks 5-4 in the final to win gold and avenge the earlier meeting between the two teams.

Klassen, third for Team Dorosz, said the championship came down to the final rocks.

“We all played really well but they were a strong team and kept us on the run,” said Klassen. “It came down to Peggy’s last two rocks — we had to get two to win and one to tie.”

The first throw didn’t curl as much as the Yukoners had hoped, but moved enough to be the shot rock. Cowichan Rocks responded with a draw shot, leaving Dorosz a chance to go for the win with a “hit and stick” to grab two in the end and win both the game and the championship.

“The rock wasn’t curling enough and I thought it was going to roll out, but it caught a little curl right at the end and we hit it on the nose and won the game,” she said.

The bronze medal draw, which Team Eby won 9-5 against Nanaimo, was decided just seconds before the final rock from Dorosz and Klassen said all eyes were on the final throw of the championship.

“It just went dead quiet with everyone watching,” said Klassen. “When we hit it, everybody just went nuts. The Yukon women were hugging us and the men were all watching upstairs and banging on the glass — it was pretty great.”

This year marks the first time ever a Yukon team has won the championship.

The two Yukon men’s teams didn’t have quite the same level of success on the scoreboard. Team Tuton — Craig Tuton, Herb Balsam, Darol Stuart and Clarence Jack — finished in a five-way tie for third in the men’s red pool and Team Miller — Terry Miller, Kevin Yost, Trent Derkatch and Bob Walker — were tied for third in the men’s blue pool.

Wins for Team Tuton came against Arizona, India and Oregon. For Team Miller, success came against California, Michigan, Nevada and Washington.

The winner of the men’s competition was Comox Valley. Silver went to Royal City and bronze went to Langley.

Contact John Hopkins-Hill at john.hopkinshill@yukon-news.com

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