Team Alberta rinks skipped by Julia Bakos and Nathan Molberg of St. Albert reached the opening playoff round in U18 curling at the Canada Winter Games.
Both teams came up short of the medal round with losses of 5-4 to New Brunswick for Bakos and 4-3 to Manitoba for Molberg last Saturday in Red Deer.
Six teams qualified for the playoffs and the top two received semifinal berths.
In the women’s tournament, Alberta (7-3) was third and New Brunswick (5-5) sixth in the 11-team round robin.
In the playoffs, New Brunswick stole the winning point in the last end after counting a deuce in seven to knot the score.
New Brunswick also stole one in five for the 2-1 lead and Bakos replied with three in six.
Bakos, third Quinn Prodaniuk, second Alyssa Nedohin, lead Julianna MacKenzie and coach Glenna Rubin kicked off the Games with five straight wins before losing 5-4 to New Brunswick in the round robin.
Ontario finished 11-1 by beating Manitoba in the women’s final 8-3 with a steal of four in six to make it 8-2.
In the men’s draw, Alberta (7-3) tied for third with Newfoundland and Labrador while Manitoba (6-4) placed fifth.
The playoff match featured a steal of one by Manitoba in six that left Alberta trailing 4-2 and in seven Molberg counted one before running out of rocks in eight.
The loss was the third in four games after four consecutive victories by Molberg, third Ben Helston, second Nicholas Warkman, lead Morgan Bilassy and coach Nicole Bellamy that started with the 6-5 decision against Manitoba.
British Columbia ended the Games at 11-1 by defeating Ontario 7-2 in the men’s final with a five-ender in seven.
The Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association curling championships wrap up today for the St. Albert Skyhawks in St. Paul.
Last year’s gold medallists in the men’s division – skip Nic Oake, third Chase Lozinsky, second Owen Pacholok and lead David Howes – completed round-robin play Friday in pool B against Barrhead, Trochu, Georges P. Vanier of Donnelly and Westwood of Fort McMurray. Scores were unavailable at press time.
The pool A teams are Lindsay Thurber of Red Deer, William Aberhart Orange of Calgary, St. Paul, Lethbridge Collegiate Institute and Two Hills.
The medal finals are at 2 p.m.
Visit www.asaa.ca for results.
The Skyhawks entered provincials as the metro Edmonton league champions while going 4-1 in the 13-team double elimination tournament following the 5-0 showing in the seeding round.
Last year the Skyhawks lost the metro Edmonton final 8-5 to the Strathcona Lords but the Lords were unable to ice a full lineup for provincials in St. Albert so the Skyhawks represented the league in the 10-team tournament and finished 5-1 after beating Lethbridge 5-4 for the gold medal.
The Curling Alberta mixed playdowns slid into action Friday for the Doug McLennan rink in Camrose.
The opening draw in the 13-team competition for the St. Albert/Spruce Grove foursome of McLennan, third Kim Zsakai, second Lyle Biever and lead Brenda Doroshuk was against Corey Leach of Lac La Biche. The score was unavailable at press time.
Four qualifiers advance to provincials, March 27 to 31 at the Shamrock, and the finals are tonight at 7:30 p.m. in A and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. in B and C1 and 7:30 p.m. in C2.
The Curling Alberta U18 Optimist juvenile men’s and women’s championships start Thursday in Medicine Hat with several male and female juniors with St. Albert connections competing.
Ranked No. 2 in the eight-team men’s draw is the St. Albert squad of skip Nathan Molberg, third Ben Helston, second Nicholas Warkman and lead Morgan Bilass that represented Alberta at the Canada Winter Games in Red Deer.
Ranked eighth is the Nic Oake rink of third Chase Lozinsky, second Carter Parenteau and lead Owen Pacholok. The foursome curl in the St. Albert Tuesday night men’s league.
Andrew Nowell is curling with the No. 4-ranked Aaron Power of the Saville Centre and Kolby McDonald is with the No. 2-ranked Connor Zeidell of Medicine Hat and both players are regulars in the St. Albert Monday night men’s league.
In the eight-team women’s draw, Julia Bakos of St. Albert is skipping the Crestwood crew of third Quinn Prodaniuk, second Kim Bonneau and lead Julianna MacKenzie and they are ranked No. 2.
Ranked No. 7 is St. Albert skip Rebecca Molberg, third Tori Hartwell, second Kristina Allen and lead Ashleigh McKinnon.
Anna Bakos is also with the No. 8-ranked Alyssa Nedohin rink of Sherwood Park.
Nedohin also played on the U18 Alberta rink with Julia Bakos as the skip with Prodaniuk and MacKenzie at the Games.
The provincial champions advance to nationals April 2 to 7 at Glen Allan Recreation Complex in Sherwood Park.