The RDC Kings curling team is looking to build upon a bronze medal finish at nationals last year and started on the right foot with a 5-0 weekend at the Fall Regionals in St. Paul. (File photo)

Kings Curling off to hot start, Queens and mixed team still finding form

Over his time at RDC, Brad Hamilton has seen the curling program grow by leaps and bounds.

In the beginning, almost nine years ago he said half-jokingly they took anyone in the hall who might have thrown a rock before.

That built into a multi-national title winning team, including women’s championships in 2014 and last year, as well a national bronze for the men last year and silver in 2012.

This year is an entirely different animal for Hamilton, as the RDC head coach will oversee three new skips at the helms of the men’s and women’s team as well as the mixed group, but 10 returning players in all.

After the same skip on the women’s side for the past three years in Marla Sherrer (ACAC Female Curler of the Year 2016-2017) and Ryan Dahmer for the past four on the men’s side, both who have moved on, there has been no mention of rebuilding or resetting before another trip to nationals.

“We’ve never talked about that at all,” Hamilton said of a rebuild.

“The veterans have said there’s an expectation, we expect to make it to provincials and once we get to provincials we expect to make it to nationals and see what happens from there. We’re not really trying to reset.”

Red Deer’s own Austin Kelts-Larsen, a second year in the Bachelor of Education program will skip the men’s group, while third-year Sara McMann of Chauvin, will skip for the women’s team. Ashlyn Wozny, a third year from Rycroft is the skip of the mixed team.

Hamilton explained that the biggest obstacle this season will be recreating pressure packed situations late in games for the new skips.

“Trying to mimic those pressure situations, especially for the skips. OK here’s the last rock, it’s the eighth end or the extra end, let’s throw it until we get comfortable,” Hamilton said.

“Just trying to get that muscle memory in, that ‘hey, I’m used to doing that when it matters’.”

The season started on the right foot for the men, who went 5-o in the Fall Regional qualifier in St. Paul on the weekend, and not ideally for the other two teams.

The Queens finished 3-3 but expected better and the mixed squad finished 2-3.

“It’s more, how are you going to handle throwing those last two rocks and (Austin) seemed to deal with that a little bit better,” Hamilton said.

“The other two, they kind of had a couple of big shots at the end of games and we made half of them and we missed half of them. That’s why we’re where we are at.

“To me, I’m OK with where they’re at now. We’re just going to build through the year and I think it will get better.”

The teams will all play in league nights throughout December, then gear up in the new year for the second regional bonspiel.

The top four teams from that advance to provincials and from there, the top few advance to nationals.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Red Deer College Kings and Queens

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Two people dead after plane flying from Rocky Mountain House crashes

The Transportation Safety Board will be investigating

Annual Chili Cook Off raises money for Red Deer Hospice Society

The key to making a great chili is preparing the sauce first,… Continue reading

Central Alberta Film Festival set to return Oct. 14-17

Central Albertans will be able to spend four days at the movies… Continue reading

City of Red Deeer seeks ‘long-term, stable’ funding

The City of Red Deer supported the City of Edmonton in its… Continue reading

Montreal demonstrators demand climate justice a year after Greta Thunberg speech

MONTREAL — Demonstrators gathered in downtown Montreal on Saturday to protest planetary… Continue reading

Officials report just one active COVID case in Nova Scotia, no new case Saturday

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia is reporting no new cases of COVID-19, leaving… Continue reading

Demonstration in Fredericton as private abortion clinic to lose its doctor

FREDERICTON — A doctor who runs a private abortion clinic in Fredericton… Continue reading

A mind-boggling tale of idiocy

Some people have the IQ of a piece of second-hand furniture

Wilkinson aims to be B.C. premier after cabinet role, working as doctor and lawyer

The B.C. election is Wilkinson’s first as the Liberal party leader

First Nations police services look to throne speech pledge for higher, stable funding

‘I won’t be happy until I hear two words: royal assent’

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $50 million Lotto Max jackpot

Jackpot for the next draw will grow to approximately $55 million

Tiny airborne particles may pose a big coronavirus problem

NEW YORK — At a University of Maryland lab, people infected with… Continue reading

Most Read