Canadian men and women win gold

Team Canada swept both events at the 2013 World Senior Curling Championships. Photo: WCF/Richard Gray

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The Canadian senior men and women’s Teams won the 2013 World Senior Curling Championships in Fredericton, New Brunswick on Sunday afternoon. The Canadian women’s team defeated Austria 13-1 in seven ends for their victory, while the Canadian men’s team defeated New Zealand 6-4.

The Canadian women’s team, which consists of Canadian Hall of Fame inductee and skip, Cathy King, third Carolyn Morris, second Lesley McEwan, lead Doreen Gares, supported by alternate Christine Jurgenson and coach Bill Tschirhart, wasted no time getting on the board, scoring six points in the first end.

Canada continued to put pressure on and in the fifth end they left Austrian skip, Veronika Huber, facing five stones with her final shot. She attempted a draw but was heavy and Canada scored five points to make the score 13-1.

Austria blanked the sixth end after rolling out on a hit and the Teams shook hands to give Canada the 2013 Women’s World Senior Curling Championship title.

After the game, King said: “It feels amazing to finally be able to say we’re world champions. We’ve worked hard for this all year, and I’m so proud of my team. I’ve been wanting this title for a long time, like the rest of my team. Being to that many Canadian championships, you want to (win) at least one world championship, so it feels awesome.”

Despite their loss, Huber was pleased with Austria’s second-place finish. She said: “I feel great because we didn’t think we’d get so far, but we won silver. To lose against Cathy, there’s no problem because she and her team are the best.”

The Canadian men’s team of skip Robert Armitage, third Keith Glover, second Randy Ponich, lead Wilf Edgar, supported by alternate Lyle Treiber and coach Bill Tschirhart, took control of the game in the sixth end. Up 3-2, Armitage made a draw for three points and a 6-2 lead. Although New Zealand scored single points in the seventh and eighth ends, Canada ran out 6-4 winners after the eighth and final end.

The victory is Armitage’s biggest accomplishment having never made a men’s national championship before. After the game Armitage said: “Oh, I’ve chased this, I’ve chased this and I’ve chased this. There was a time when my knees were bad, and you get to be 47 or 48 and I was still chasing the men’s provincials because I thought, ‘I have to keep my game until I get to seniors.’ I knew I could find the curlers, and I knew I had to have that game still in my pocket to get it done, and it was nice to see it work out. My team played really well.”

Gracious in defeat, New Zealand skip Hans Frauenlob said: “Of course we'd have preferred a different result. But we're just tremendously proud to have played in the gold medal match today representing our country. We had a few half chances today that we didn't take, and the Canadians didn't miss much at all - if anything. They played tremendously well and thoroughly deserved their win."

The men’s team from Switzerland defeated Sweden 7-2 in the bronze medal game. Tied at two points each in the sixth end, Switzerland scored four points and added one more point in the seventh end to secure the victory.

After the game, Switzerland skip Werner Attinger said: “It's a good feeling to win a medal, especially with my brothers together. 29 years ago we went to the Worlds (Men's) and we lost in the final. Here we had a good start, I had a break after we had already qualified and also this morning I didn't feel too good. It was a tough game; they used all the chances we gave them. We had to make some really nice shots."

On the women’s side, Sweden defeated Scotland in an extra end to secure a 9-8 victory. Swedish skip Ingrid Meldahl made a draw to the eight-foot around some guards to win.

After the game, Swedish skip, Ingrid Meldahl said: “This was about the best we’ve played all week. We’re all 61 to 70 years old so we’re quite aged by now. It feels good as we did lose the (semi-final) this morning.”

The World Mixed Doubles and World Senior Curling Championships 2014 will take place in Dumfries, Scotland, between 22 and 29 April, 2014. More information will become available on http://wmdcc2014.curlingevents.com and http://wscc2014.curlingevents.com.

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