It wasn’t the outcome they were dreaming of but the Kimberley Junior Girls curling team can enter 2017 with their heads held high.
Made up of skip Alysha Buchy, second Haylie Farquhar, third Kaila Buchy, and lead Arissa Toffolo travelled to New Westminster from December 27 to January 1 to compete in the 2017 BC Junior Curling Championships and won several draws.
Although they ended up being eliminated in the quarterfinals by the Prince George Golf & Curling Club’s Connell rink by a 7-4 scoreline, the team had a solid 4-3 record in the round robin play and, most importantly, had a great time.
“It was definitely a lot of fun and we left [everything we had in us] out on the ice,” skip Alysha Buchy said of the tournament. “We made our goal which was to make the playoffs and see what happens, it just didn’t go our way [in the end].”
The Buchy rink started off the tournament strong with a 9-5 win over McGillvray from Vernon in their first draw, On the second day, the team suffered two tough defeats from Daniels of the Delta Thistle Club, 6-4, and Connell, 9-6.
Despite being a young team, with an 18-year-old skip and three curlers under 16-years-old when the tournament is for anyone under 20, Buchy doesn’t believe that inexperience affected them in a major way.
“It was definitely a bit of a factor because [some other teams] had more experience due to being older,” she said. “I think we still had the same opportunity as them, they just might have had a little more knowledge.”
On day three, Buchy got back in the win column with a 10-5 victory over Fischer from Chilliwack and a 7-6 win over Coulombe from Victoria. Finally, the girls split the fourth day with a 4-2 loss to Brown of Kamloops and a 8-7 win over Bourassa of Delta.
“The girls played very well and our goal was to make the playoffs and then set a new goal after that,” said Tom Buchy, Alysha’s father and the team’s head coach. “[The quarterfinal] was a good game and it came down to the ninth end. We were tied in the ninth and [Connell] ended up scoring three on us and we just couldn’t get it back.
“Overall, the girls played fantastic. They had a very close game with [Brown] who won it all and the runner-up, [Daniels], who won last year too, beat us on their last rock, so the girls came really close. It was a great provincial for them.”
The team is now back in Kimberley where they will continue with their league play and practice schedule in preparation for next year’s tournament. They hope to return in December 2017 as an even more experienced and talented team.
Their performance in New Westminster capped off a very successful year for the girls who won the BC High School Provincials in March as representatives of Selkirk High School.
The team would like to extend thank yous to the Kimberley Curling Club, Sun Life Financial – Frank Vanden Broek, and Selkirk Beverages USW 1-405 for all their support.