RDC Curling 2018-19 season preview

Ashlyn Wozny joins the Queens this season after curling on the mixed team. Photo - Tony Hansen
Ashlyn Wozny joins the Queens this season after curling on the mixed team. Photo - Tony Hansen

2017-18 Review

Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) Fall and Winter Regionals

RDC Queens (8-4)

RDC Kings (8-2)

Mixed team (5-5)

 

ACAC Championships

RDC Queens – gold medal 

RDC Kings – silver medal

Mixed team – fourth

 

Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Curling National Championships

The Queens and Kings qualified for nationals but missed the playoffs.

 

2017-18 Awards

ACAC Female Curler of the Year – Sara McMann

Red Deer Bottling RDC Female Athlete of the Year – Sara McMann

Colby Brochu Photography

ACAC Men's Curling All-Conference team – Andrew Jones

Colby Brochu Photography

RDC Athletics Awards Night

Coach's Award – Chloe Logelin

Most Improved Player – Austin Kelts-Larsen

Rookie of the Year – Shelby Primrose

Most Valuable Player – Sara McMann

 

2018-19 Preview

After winning medals at last year's ACAC Curling Championships, the RDC Curling teams are motivated for another successful season on the ACAC curling circuit, looking ahead to an eventual berth in nationals for the Queens and Kings.

"Once someone has a taste of nationals, it is always the goal to get back," says Brad Hamilton, RDC Curling Head Coach. "The Queens and Kings were in the ACAC finals last year and we will go hard this year again. The men's division will be ridiculously competitive and so will the women's. It will be tough."

Last season, the Queens and Kings qualified for the national championships but missed out on the playoff round. Hamilton sees a motivated group who wants to return to the national stage, and curlers on the Queens, Kings and mixed team have been extremely eager to hit the ice and gym.

"This year there is way more fitness training at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre with Greg Howe, RDC Strength and Conditioning Coach," says Hamilton. "He created a specific program for the curlers and our practices have been cranking up the past couple of weeks."

 

Assistant Coaches – Jason Anderson, Eldon Raab

 

RDC Queens Curling team

Skip – Sara McMann  - returning

Third – Hollie Vincent - new

Second – Brett Day  - returning

Lead – Ashlyn Wozny – returning to RDC Curling, new to women's team

Colby Brochu Photography

"Ashlyn played on the mixed team last season but is moving over to the women's team this year," says Hamilton. "Hollie, a first-year Nursing student, is new to the team and fits in well. She was quite a competitive juvenile and junior curler. I expect them to be one of the top three teams."

 

RDC Kings Curling team

Skip – Austin Kelts-Larsen  - returning

Third – Andrew Jones  - returning

Second – Carter Snethun - returning

Lead – Shayne Copeland  - returning/ Nic Bonneau – new

Colby Brochu Photography

"Four of the five guys are back. Jordan (Smith) graduated and has moved on to teaching. We replaced him with Nic (Bonneau) who is a junior curler from B.C. and fortunately his family moved to Rocky Mountain House. He's definitely a welcome addition to the team and will share lead with Shayne," says Hamilton. "The guys should be one of the top teams. We know who is back from the other colleges, and it should be very tough. The men are very motivated and have worked very hard so far."

Hamilton has switched the positions of two talented Kings, and the change provides a spark and addresses a rule change. "We felt we went a little flat at nationals last year, and we thought that we would try Andrew at third, and he's done well there," says Hamilton. "Carter has been on fire since he's been playing second. With the new five rock rule, he seems to be a great fit in that spot."

With the recent rule change, rocks in front of the rings can't be removed from play until five rocks have been thrown in an end. Previously, the rule was four rocks in the free guard zone. The change was implemented to keep more rocks in play and potentially increase scoring opportunities.

 

RDC Mixed Curling team

Skip – Thomas Crawford – new

Third – Erica Watts – new

Second – Jayden Mitchell - returning

Lead – Jaycee Bourke – new/ Courtney Chesterman - new

Colby Brochu Photography

A young mixed team will look to be in the hunt for an ACAC medal after a fourth place finish last season. "The five members of the mixed team have not curled together before so it's nice to have Jayden back. He is very positive," says Hamilton. "The team has been working hard and had one of their best games recently."

The youthful recruits bring pedigree and ambition. "Thomas was the skip for the men's high school team in Ponoka, so it's not much of a jump for him this year. Erica used to play junior with Hollie and she has a lot of competitive curling experience, and is fitting in well," says Hamilton. "Jaycee has curled a lot in high school, and Courtney took a year or two off, and I remember watching her curl in high school. We tried to recruit Courtney a couple of years ago, and she's very competitive so she's good to have on the team."

Not returning – David Austin, Chloe Logelin, Katie Primrose, Shelby Primrose, Jordan Smith, Brent Taylor-Gross, Kalynna Watson

The Red Deer College Curling teams will host the ACAC Curling Fall Regional, November 23 – 25, at the Pidherney Curling Centre in Red Deer.