Randy Neufeld and his La Salle team of Dean Moxham, Peter Nicholls, and Dale Michie have won their third Strathcona Trust Manitoba Senior Men’s Championship.
The team was the Manitoba Senior Champion team in 2015 and 2016 as well as winning the 2016 World Seniors Silver Medal.
The Neufeld foursome defeated CurlManitoba President Ray Baker and his Dauphin team of Jason Yates, Dwight Bottrell, Terry Gudmundson 7-4 in the Tuesday afternoon final at Pembina. It was one of the few times in Manitoba’s long curling history that a sitting president had an opportunity to win a Manitoba championship during his term.
Baker started strong, playing a split on the first end to roll a rock onto the rings along with his shooter to count a pair. However Neufeld scored two on the second and stole two on the third to lead 4-2 and take control of the game. Baker made a dramatic triple kill with his last rock of the seventh but still left Neufeld with a draw for two and a 7-4 lead coming home. Baker ran out of rocks coming home.
The two finalist teams took identical routes to the final game. Both qualified undefeated through the “A” event in the triple knock-out competition and both defeated the “B” qualifiers in the semi-finals; Neufeld beat Dave Boehmer (Granite) and Baker beat Richard Muntain (Granite). Boehmer and Muntain had defeated the “C” qualifiers in the quarterfinals; Boehmer beat Rob Atkins (East St. Paul) and Muntain beat Bill Menzies (Granite).
Neufeld and his champions will have the opportunity to represent Manitoba at the Everest Canadian Senior Championships December 6-11 in Sault Ste. Marie.
With the third Seniors title, Team Neufeld joins Dave Boehmer, Kelly Robertson, and Lloyd Gunnlaugson teams as three time champions with the same team. Barry Fry also won three but with different teams and Gunnlaugson actually won a fourth, with a slightly changed team.