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Penticton and Grand Forks win gold at B.C. School Sports curling provincials in Terrace

Kitimat and Grand Forks girls, Salmon Arm and Langley boys also taking home medals

The B.C. School Sports curling provincials wrapped up in Terrace on Saturday, Feb. 25 with the Penticton Secondary girls team and the Grand Forks Secondary boys team taking home gold after Zack Wolfram broke the tie in a tight extra-end shot right to the button over Salmon Arm Secondary, who took silver for the boys after losing only one game.

Grand Forks Secondary won silver for the girls over Kitimat’s own Mount Elizabeth Secondary, who won bronze early in the day before Langley’s Walnut Grove Secondary won bronze for the boys.

Terrace’s Caledonia Senior Secondary had a shot at the finals but would have needed two wins in a row on Friday to make the final cut.

The week-long tournament brought teams from across the province together at the Terrace curling rink with the top two teams from each round robin facing off for the weekend championship.

Zone representative and Kitimat coach Dave Durrant came up with the idea to have the event in Terrace and coordinated through BC School Sports, the Terrace and Kitimat clubs.

“I’m from Kitimat and our ice plant has not worked for the last two years. And the the Terrace people embraced me and my team like they were members of this community. They’ve just been awesome.

“This is an absolutely brilliant facility. I’ve been so fortunate to get to know all of the people. We’ve had over 30 volunteers helping us with this tournament. It’s just been fantastic.”

Seven boys teams and six girls teams participated in the championships, with some arriving late due to flight delays. But it all came together and went smoothly at the end of the day, said Durrant.

“Some teams who arrived 24 hours late had to basically get off a plane, scramble to the hotel and then run to the rink to play their first game with all the jet-lag and everything else.

“I breathed a real sigh of relief when those last teams got off the plane.”

The teams got a chance to mesh and socialize at a banquet on Friday with about 100 people including coaches, some parents and all the athletes, followed by a dance.

They wrapped up Friday with a friendly tournament and are again facing cancelled flights on Saturday due to inclement weather.

“We’re trying to promote mixed doubles concept for BC School Sports so we’ll have randomly placed teams out on the ice,” said Durrant.

Durrant added that curling is a great sport to promote among youth and it can become a life-long pastime.

“In my experience as a coach, and I’ve been doing this for a while now, it’s about seeing the absolute happiness and quality people that participate in curling and the kids are absolutely no exception.

“They’re just a pleasure to be around and a joy to coach.”


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