There was great competition on arena ice at the Willie O’Ree Place in Fredericton on the weekend at the CWG SLAM spiel for teams of age for the 2019 Canada Winter Games. Five Island rinks took part, and all managed to come out at least one win, some great experience against top teams from across Atlantic Canada, and invaluable experience playing on arena ice in a large venue. The ice was in place for the Canadian Seniors which preceded the event, and was in tip-top shape thanks to a Level II Icemaking course that was being held at the same time. 16 boy’s and 16 girl’s teams took part.
In the girl’s division, Cornwall’s Rachel MacLean rink picked up two wins and a loss in round robin play, while the Lauren Ferguson team, also from Cornwall, won their round robin opener 7-1 in six ends, but lost game two 7-6 in an extra end. They lost their final round robin game as well, but rebounded with an 8-2 win in the crossover game against a team from another pool.
On the boy’s side, Summerside’s Cruz Pineau rink had two round robin wins, one of them in an extra end, and one by a lopsided (18-1) score, while Cornwall’s Chase MacMillan team also went 2-1 in round robin play. The Mitchell Schut rink from Cornwall lost their first two games in a strong pool by close scores, and then lost to a very strong Newfoundland and Labrador team. Team Schut then picked up an 11-0 win in the crossover game against a team from another pool.
The overall winners were both from New Brunswick: Team Cluff on the girl’s side, and the Josh Nowlan boy’s rink. Nowlan is the grandson of Summerside curlers Lou and Marg Nowlan.
At the opening ceremonies, organizers announced that the O’Ree place will be used for a similar event the next three years.