For Immediate Release
Curling teams representing two rural Manitoba communities will be joining the larger Team Manitoba at the 2023 Canada Games in Prince Edward Island in February.
Altona’s Dayna Wahl team and Virden’s Jace Freeman team won CurlManitoba’s Canada Games Trials Sunday, October 30 at Winnipeg’s Heather Curling Club.
Team Wahl completed the competition with a 5W-4L record, winning a pair of playoff games after a middle-of-the-pack round robin finish from which they advanced based on tiebreakers.
A Sunday morning semi-final victory over previously unbeaten Team Grace Beaudry-St. Vital set up a final game against Team Shaela Hayward-Carman for Team Wahl (Piper Stoesz, Anna Marie Ginters, Gillian Hildebrand and Coach Keith Stoesz).
The Altona team trailed by a 4-1 score at the midgame break but outscored the Carman foursome 5-1 through the second half to win 6-5.
Skip Dayna Wahl threw her last stone tight past a stone high in the rings and stopped full in the eight foot in front of her shot stone in the four foot circle. Hayward had to bite the button to win or the four foot to tie but was just short on the attempt.
For Freeman (Elias Huminicki, Jack Steski, Rylan Graham, and Coach Graham Freeman) it took a last stone takeout to end a comeback attempt by Heather’s Ronan Peterson who had scored singles on ends 6 & 7 to trail by one coming home. The final score was 7-5.
A four on the fifth end gave Freeman a 6-3 lead but Team Peterson controlled each of the next two ends. Peterson’s last stone draw to the four foot circle was a bit deep and over curled to be mostly open, allowing Freeman to hit with the luxury of having second shot rock if he rolled out.
The Virden team had earned a bye to the final with a perfect 6W-0L round-robin record.
Bronze medals went to Team Luke Robins-West St. Paul, who lost the semi-final 4-2 to Team Peterson, and Team Grace Beaudry, who won a bronze medal match 6-1 over Team Julia Van Ryssel-Springfield.
The Freeman team becomes the first youth team to represent the Virden Curling Club in national competition while Team Wahl continues the legacy of 2019 Canada Games Team Hayley Bergman and World Junior champion Team Mackenzie Zacharias.
Manitoba’s Mixed Doubles Canada Games Curling Team will be identified in Trials scheduled for November 24-27, also at Heather.