Lakeland Rustlers Curling Team
(From left) Lakeland Rustlers Team Coach Dusty Makichuk, Kaylee Duncan, Cooper Nicholson, Desiree Beaulieu, Branden Cookson and Assistant Coach Lindsay Makichuk.
Photo Marie Conboy
Top curlers from across Alberta competed to determine this year's champions at the ACAC (Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference) Curling Championships, hosted by the Lakeland Rustlers at the Vermilion Curling Club, from February 24 - 26.
Rustlers Coach Dusty Makichuk said it’s the first time the club has hosted the provincials in Vermilion in 3 years.
“It’s great for the economy of Vermilion, as all of the teams travelled here and stay in hotels and go to the restaurants and see what we have to offer here. Our ice is great, I would put our ice up against anyone in Alberta,’ said Makichuk.
Coach Makichuk said the Lakeland Rustlers Curling team have been training since last autumn and that he picked the team based on their dynamics and ability to work together.
Teams travelled from as far away Red Deer, Viking and NAIT attending to compete.
The Lakeland Rustlers won their first game on Friday.
Lakeland’s mixed teams finished 6-1 and 5-2 at the regional competitions and were second in the overall standards leading up the Provincials. The men and women’s teams placed fifth and sixth respectfully.
All teams have competed in 2 draws in their division.
Lakeland Athletics Director Alan Rogan commented on the Rustlers performance over the weekend.
“The Concordia Thunder mixed team took on the MacEwan Griffins. At the 4th end break the Griffins were up 4 - 3 but in the 6th end the Thunder took a 4 spot on route to an 8 - 5 victory. In the other mixed game Lakeland took on Red Deer. Picking up 3 in the 2nd and 5 in the 4th the Lakeland Rustlers cruised to a 9 - 3 victory. On the men's side two close games occurred. In the Olds vs. Red Deer game it went back and forth and after 8 the score was tied. The Broncos stole 2 in the extra end to pick up the 6 - 4 win. NAIT and Augustana battled in the other men's game which was also proved to be a back and forth affair. In the 8th end the Vikings scored 2, good enough for the 5 - 4 victory.
In draw 2 had the men's teams back on the ice along with the first round of women's play
On the women's side Red Deer took on the Augustana Vikings. The Queens applied constant pressure to the Viking squad which resulted in an 8 - 2 victory for the Queens and the teams shaking hands after 6 ends. In the other women's game Concordia was up on NAIT 3 - 2 at the break however NAIT came back with a 3 spot in the 6th and picked up one more in the 8th to squeak out a 6 - 5 victory.
The second draw of the day for the men saw the Red Deer Kings take on the Augustana Vikings. The Vikings roared out to a 7 - 1 lead after 4 but the Kings chipped away over the next 4 ends to earn the 9 - 7 win. In the second men's game of draw two saw the Olds Broncos taking on the NAIT Ooks,” said Rogan.
The top 2 men's and women's teams will continue on to CCAA Curling National Championships at University of Alberta - Augustana in Camrose from March 22 – 25.
See next week’s issue for results.