Airdrie Curling Club members part of championship team
By: Lucas Punkari
| Posted: Thursday, Dec 05, 2013 11:03 am
Although its been a couple of weeks since their team took home this year’s Canadian Mixed Curling championship, the accomplishment is still sinking in for Airdrie Curling Club members Heather Jensen and Brent Hamilton.
The pair, who both live in Calgary, were members on Darren Moulding’s Alberta squad that took home this year’s title with an 8-5 win over Ontario’s Cory Heggestad on Nov. 23 at the Rideau Curling Club in Ottawa.
“It’s really one of those things where it takes an extended period of time to sink in,” Hamilton, who was the team’s second, said. “You go through all of the trials and the tribulation of an event like that, and then you have to get back into the real world, so I think it will still be a few months until it settles in that we won the event.”
The national championship was also a special one for Jensen, who is the team’s third, as she got to hoist the trophy with her brother Darren and her sister-in-law Anna-Marie, who curl out of the Coaldale Curling Club.
“I think that’s what made this championship mean so much more,” Jensen said. “To be able to accomplish something like this with my family members and a close friend in Brent is quite an experience.”
After finishing the round-robin portion of the tournament in first place with a 9-2 record, Alberta had a bye straight into the finals, where they went up against an Ontario rink that was the defending champion.
“I think because of the fact that they were the home rink as the Ontario representatives, and also because they were the defending champions, they had a little bit more pressure on them heading into the finals,” Jensen said.
“We just went into that game with a nothing-to-lose attitude, and it paid off.”
The two teams traded points with one another until the ninth end, when Alberta stole two points to take an 8-5 lead that they would never relinquish.
“It was a back-and-forth game the entire time up until that end,” Hamilton said. “We had a chance early on to take the lead by a big margin, but Ontario bounced right back every time, and I really think that it could have come down to whoever made the final shot in the 10th end if it wasn’t for that steal.”
With the win, the Moulding rink earned a pair of spots in the 2014 Canadian Mixed Doubles championships, which will be held in Ottawa from March 19 to 23.
However, the team’s members are still working out its plans for whether or not they will be attending that event.
“Darren makes the ice and manages the club in Coaldale, which will be hosting the Canadian Masters championship during that time, so it will be very hard for him to leave for an event,” Hamilton said. “More than likely, it would be Heather and I that would have a team in the event, but we need to see if it works with our schedules.”
In the meantime, the entire rink will be saluted for its efforts at the Airdrie Curling Club on Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m., when a banner will be hoisted to the club’s rafters.
“The support that we have had from the club in Airdrie has been amazing,” Jensen said. “It’s an amazing feeling to have so many people cheering you on, and our entire team can’t wait to thank everyone during that event.”