Scott Howard leads three man team to impressive victory in Penticton against stacked field
With his father sidelined with an injury, Scott Howard led his three-man team to an impressive victory at the Nufloors Penticton Curling Classic on Monday.
Penetanguishene’s Team Howard defeated Team John Shuster of the United States, the 2018 Olympic gold medalists, in the final by a score of 5-3, capping off a run of six straight wins, including five with just three players.
Glenn Howard, who owns four Brier Tankards and four World Championships in his legendary career, was forced to the sidelines following the fourth game of the round robin due to a knee injury. The 61-year-old skip was replaced by his 33-year-old son Scott, who regularly throws third stones on the team.
Scott, alongside teammates in second David Mathers and lead Tim March, proceeded to win their next five games against some of the best teams in North America.
They downed Team Kevin Koe in a tiebreaker, 6-3, to reach the playoffs before edging Team Aaron Sluchinski in the quarterfinal, 7-6. In the semifinal, Howard and company routed the No. 1 ranked team in the Canada in Team Brendan Bottcher, 10-4, before beating Team Shuster in the championship game.
The win was the first for Team Howard this season after picking up back-to-back semifinal appearances.
The rinks led by Mike McEwen and Reid Carruthers were both eliminated in the quarterfinal round while Matt Dunstone’s team out of Manitoba fell to Team Shuster in the semis.
The massive 30-team event had a purse of $100,000.
Gushue wins in Japan
Brad Gushue has won many curling events around the globe in his impressive career, but none in Japan. Until now.
Gushue and his St. John’s, Nfld., foursome of third Mark Nichols, second E.J. Harnden and lead Geoff Walker competed at the annual Karuizawa International in Japan this past weekend and left as champions.
Team Gushue won all five of their games, including a 6-4 semifinal triumph over the reigning Olympic champs from Sweden in Team Niklas Edin and Japan’s Hayato Sato in the final, 7-1.
This was Gushue’s second win of the season as the Brier champs hold a total record of 25-8.
On the women’s side it was the hometown team led by Ikue Kitazawa getting the better of South Korea’s Team EunJung Kim in the final, 7-6.
The Canadian teams were highlighted by Kaitlyn Lawes’ rink, who finished third and Team Jennifer Jones, who went 0-3 and missed the playoffs.
Horgan wins again
As 2023 comes to a close, Tanner Horgan and his team from Sudbury are heating up.
Team Horgan, featuring two members of last year’s Northern Ontario champions, went a perfect 5-0 to win the DEKALB Superspiel in Morris, Man., capping it off with a 4-2 victory over Team Braden Calvert in the final.
This was their second straight bonspiel win after capturing the Curl Mesabi Classic last month.
Skip Tanner Horgan and brother Jake, who plays third on the team, represented the association at last year’s Canadian championship alongside veteran curlers in Darren Moulding and Colin Hodgson. Moulding and Hodgson both took a step away from competitive curling this season and were replaced by second Ian McMillan and lead Scott Chadwick.
In the women’s draw, Switzerland’s Team Xenia Schwaller outlasted Edmonton’s Team Serena Gray-Withers, 6-5, in an extra end final to claim the title.
Team Schwaller are red-hot as well and have now won four straight events on Tour, with the Morris bonspiel being the first on Canadian soil.
Ottawa’s Team Danielle Inglis, Vancouver’s Team Clancy Grandy and Team Corryn Brown of Kamloops all lost in the quarters while Edmonton’s Team Selena Sturmay dropped their semifinal clash to Team Schwaller.
Asselin, Auld win in Brantford
Quebec champion Felix Asselin and his squad from Montreal are winners on Tour for a second time this season after capturing the Stu Sells Brantford Nissan Classic.
Asselin, third Martin Crete, second Emile Asselin and lead Jean-Francois Trepanier won all six of their games, highlighted by beating Ontario’s Team Sam Mooibroek in the final, 5-2.
Team Asselin also captured the Stu Sells 1824 Halifax Classic in early November and are 23-6 this season.
Team Courtney Auld of Thornhill, Ont., defeated Team Kerry Galusha of Yellowknife, 6-4, in the women’s final.
They won seven of their eight game for their first bonspiel win of 2023-24.
Alberta Curling Series
In the third event of the season on the Alberta Curling Series, Calgary’s Team Kayla Skrlik won their third event of 2023-24 with an 8-3 victory over Team Michelle Hartwell in the final.
In the men’s final, Team Ryan Parent downed Team Jamie Koe, 7-6, in an extra end.
Mixed Doubles Winners
The Mixed Doubles Super Series returned this past weekend with the Winnipeg Open.
The final featured a clash between two Canadian duos in Edmonton's Laura Walker-Kirk Muyres and Winnipeg's Kadriana Lott-Brayden Stewart.
Lott and Steward were the last team standing, holding of Walker and Muyres for the 7-6 victory.