A quartet of Southwest curling teams competed in the provincial Dominion Championships this past weekend.
The Clayton Wicks rink representing the Swift Current Curling Club advanced to the playoff round at the Dominion Men's Provincial Championship hosted in Ituna.
Wicks ran into some hard luck in the page playoff round, dropping a 6-1 decision to Weyburn's Jim Nikolejsin. Wicks trailed by a 2-1 count after four ends before Nikolejsin stole a single in the sixth to open a 3-1 lead. In the seventh end, a Wicks stone picked up debris and allowed Nikolejsin to steal three and end the game.
The Wicks rink, which included third Glen Letnes, second Wayne Oakman and lead Greg Moffatt, dropped their A event opener before stringing together a trio of B event wins to advance into the championship round.
In game one against the Jess Franklin foursome from the host Ituna Curling Club, Wicks gave up three in the opening end and was down 4-1 after four ends before starting to gamble in order to come back. Wicks took one in the fifth and stole a single in the sixth to pull within 4-3, but Franklin counted four in the seventh to end up with an 8-3 win.
The Wicks rink began their must-win run of games with a 13-4 victory over North Battleford's Doug Horn, turning around a 4-3 game with four in the sixth and a steal of six in the seventh end.
In their next outing Wicks scored a 5-4 win over the Greg Tarasoff rink from the Sutherland Curling Club in Saskatoon. Wicks stole a pair in the opening end before the teams traded singles for the next four ends. Tarasoff stole a single in the seventh to tie the game at 4-4, but Wicks drew to the four foot with his final stone in eighth for the victory.
In one of the two B event qualifiers, Wicks stole his way to a 6-5 win over Ryan Wenarchuk from Moose Jaw. Wenarchuk jumped out to a 5-0 lead after four ends, counting a single in the first, stealing two in the second, and stealing singles in both the third and fourth ends. Wicks rebounded with a pair in the sixth and he stole two in both of the final two ends for the upset win.
The Shaylor Layman rink from Lafleche strung together a 2-2 record at the 16-team event. Layman was curing with third Bruce Anderson, second Brian Ross and lead Glenn Sproule.
They won their A event opener 7-4 over Brent Franko from St. Front, breaking open a 4-4 game with a three-ender in the seventh. In game two they dropped an 11-4 decision to Nikolejsin after yielding six points in the seventh.
In their B event opener Layman earned a 7-5 extra end victory over Shellbrook's Rick Thompson. They could not carry the momentum from their thrilling win into their next game, as Layman's tournament ended with a 5-3 loss to Wenarchuk. Layman counted a single in the first but gave up three in the second and steals of one in the third and fifth to fall behind by a 5-1 margin.
The Jennifer Wickenheiser rink from Abbey posted a 2-2 record at the Dominion Women's Provincial Championship hosted in Rosetown. Wickenheiser was curling with third Leanne Cherkowski, second Diane Braaten and lead Krista Marlin.
The Abbey rink posted an 8-7 win over Alana Ritz from Rosetown during a wide open first draw. Wickenheiser counted three-point ends in the first and sixth, but Ritz rebounded with triples in the fourth and seventh ends. Ritz then stole a single in the eighth and final end to tie the game at 7-7, but Wickenheiser used hammer to count a single in the ninth for the victory. The Abbey rink was bumped into the B event following a 5-4 loss to Nicole Beausoleil of North Battleford. They had trailed 5-1 after six ends, but roared back with a single in the seventh and a steal of two in the eighth to nearly complete a comeback.
The Wickenheiser rink won their B event opener by stealing a 7-5 victory over Outlook's Audrey Harris. They trailed by a 5-2 margin after five ends, but counted a single in the sixth, they stole a single in the seventh before they completed the comeback with a steal of three in the final end.
Their tournament ended with an 11-7 defeat to Joy Butler from Humboldt after Butler overcame a 7-5 deficit with three in the seventh and a steal of three in the final end.
The Southwest was also represented by the Laura Greffard rink from Glentworth. They had a tough showing at provincials, dropping their opener 11-5 to Butler after giving up a steal of six in the fifth end, and a 7-4 loss to Darlene Gillies from Kindersley after falling behind by a 5-0 count after three ends.
The Greffard rink included Kathy Eklund at third, June Belsher as second, and lead Gail Peterson.
Teams qualified to participate in the Dominion Provincial Championships must have played as a team at the local club level, with teams facing off in club and regional playdowns in order to advance to provincials.