Skip to main content

SCOREBOARD

Stacked field set to compete for Scotties title in Calgary

Kerri Einarson Team Kerri Einarson - Curling Canada
Published

The 2024 Scotties Tournament of Hearts has arrived.

This year’s Canadian women’s curling championship returns to Calgary for the fourth time and first since the memorable 2021 Scotties that took place inside the WinSport Event Centre’s “bubble” during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Canada’s Team Kerri Einarson defeated Ontario’s Team Rachel Homan – while Homan was eight months pregnant - in that year’s final for their second of four consecutive Scotties title.

This year’s bonspiel will have a very different vibe compared to the cardboard cutouts and audible toilet flushing of 2021.

Curling Canada announced last month that tickets to the Calgary Scotties are selling rapidly with the gold-medal game – set for Sunday, Feb. 25 – down to standing-room only tickets available. The expected packed houses will be a welcomed change of atmosphere for players and fans alike.

There will be plenty of storylines to keep fans interested over the 10-day event (Feb. 16-25) as well.

Top contenders such as Einarson, Homan, Jennifer Jones, Kaitlyn Lawes and Krista McCarville will all vie for the title while newcomers like Danielle Inglis, Skylar Ackerman and Selena Sturmay hope to make a name for themselves on the national stage. 

All eyes will be on the 49-year-old Jones who will make her 18th and final Scotties appearance in Calgary after announcing on Tuesday that she will retire at the end of the season.

Unlike the Montana’s Brier Canadian men’s curling championship, Nunavut will not compete at this year’s Tournament of Hearts and has been replaced by a second CTRS team.

The 18-team field will be broken down into two pools of nine where an eight-game round robin will commence. Following round-robin play, the top three teams from each pool will advance to the six-team playoff.

There will be no tiebreakers at this year's Scotties with head-to-head results followed by Last-Shot Draw rankings determining playoff spots if needed.

ContentId(1.2075333): TSN’s curling experts take a deep dive into the Scotties

In the playoffs, the first-place team in Pool A will take on the second-place team in Pool B and vice versa. The winners of these games will advance to the page playoff 1 vs. 2 game while the losers take on the third-place finishers for a spot in the 3 vs. 4 game. From there, a standard page playoff is played to determine the national champion. 

The last team standing will represent Canada at the World Women's Curling Championship from March 16-24 at Centre 200 in Sydney, N.S.

You can watch every draw throughout the week on TSN, TSN.ca and the TSN App.

Here’s a look at the teams and the storylines heading into the Scotties Tournament of Hearts.

 

Pool A

Team Kerri Einarson (Canada)

Embedded Image

Club: Gimli Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 3
Record: 25-17

Skip: Kerri Einarson
Third: Val Sweeting
Second: Shannon Birchard
Lead: Briane Harris
Coach: Reid Carruthers

The 2024 Scotties title will go through Kerri Einarson and her rink out of the Gimli Curling Club one way or another.

Team Einarson have won four straight Canadian championships, with a fifth title in Calgary passing Nova Scotia’s Team Colleen Jones for most consecutive Scotties wins in history.

Additionally, 28-year-old Shannon Birchard can become the fourth player in history – joining Jennifer Jones, Colleen Jones and Jill Officer – to win six Scotties championships.

Their most recent gold-medal victory came last year in Kamloops, B.C., when they hammered Team Jones in the final by a score of 10-4.

However, the 2023-24 season has been a bit of an outlier for the rink that has played together since 2018. They own a 25-17 record with no wins on Tour and just one appearance in a final. Team Einarson have qualified in all four Grand Slam events, highlighted by three semifinal showings.

Not a bad year by any means for the two-time world bronze medallists, but not one we’re used to seeing from the group that had donned the Maple Leaf at the past three national championships.

If they are going to make history with a fifth straight national title and qualify for the World Women’s Curing Championship to complete their “unfinished business” of winning a gold medal, Team Einarson are going to have to find another gear in Calgary.

 

Team Kaitlyn Lawes (Manitoba – Provincial Champion)

Embedded Image

Club: Fort Rouge Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 4
Record: 34-22

Skip: Kaitlyn Lawes
Third: Selena Njegovan
Second: Jocelyn Peterman
Lead: Kristin MacCuish
Coach: Connor Njegovan

Last season was a whirlwind for Team Kaitlyn Lawes in their first year as a foursome.

Lawes, Selena Njegovan and Jocelyn Peterman were all pregnant at various points during the season and had few games with their regular lineup on the ice at the same time.

Despite the inconsistency, Team Lawes were a win away from making the playoffs at the Scotties, falling to Nova Scotia’s Team Christina Black in a tiebreaker.

This year has been a different story with more time on the ice together in competitive environments.  Team Lawes were finalists at the Tour Challenge in October and won the Manitoba Scotties with a dramatic 9-8 win over Team Beth Peterson.

Lawes, 35, will be a favourite for the playoffs and is looking for her first Scotties title since 2015.

 

Team Selena Sturmay (Alberta)

Embedded Image

Club: Saville Community Sport Centre
Canadian Ranking: 5
Record: 44-23

Skip: Selena Sturmay
Third: Danielle Schmiemann
Second: Dezaray Hawes
Lead: Paige Papley
Coach: Ted Appelman

Alberta will be represented by a Scotties rookie in 2024.

Selena Sturmay, 25, won the provincial title in January after her Edmonton rink downed the defending champs led by Kayla Skrlik in the final.

Team Sturmay have had a strong Tour season in 2023-24 and come into the Calgary Scotties ranked fifth in Canada. In addition to the Alberta Scotties, Sturmay’s crew won the Saville Grand Prix and were finalists at the Red Deer Curling Classic, losing to Team Rachel Homan, 8-1.

Third Danielle Schmiemann has never played in a Scotties either while second Dezaray Hawes represented British Columbia at nationals in 2020 and 2021.

Sturmay won gold at the 2019 Canadian Juniors before following up with a silver medal performance at World Junior Championships.

Team Sturmay will be the hometown team in Calgary in what is expected to be an electric bonspiel in terms of crowd engagement. Will they help lift Sturmay into the playoffs in a very tough Pool A? 

 

Team Corryn Brown (British Columbia – CTRS)

Embedded Image

Club: Kamloops Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 8
Record: 40-18

Skip: Corryn Brown
Third: Erin Pincott
Second: Jennifer Armstrong
Lead: Samantha Fisher
Alternate: Jaelyn Cotter
Coach: Jim Cotter

Kamloops’ Corryn Brown is returning to the Tournament of Hearts for the first time in three years.

Team Brown was routed in the BC Scotties final, losing 11-3 to Team Clancy Grandy, but qualified for the Canadian championship as the second-highest unqualified team on the CTRS following Nunavut’s withdrawal.

They have one small bonspiel win on their card this season and have qualified in eight of nine events.

Brown led Team BC to the championship pool in 2020 but came up short the following season.

With the likes of Einarson, Lawes and Krista McCarville in Pool A, a few upsets will be needed from Team Brown if they want to find a path to the six-team playoff.

 

Team Skylar Ackerman (Saskatchewan)

Embedded Image

Club: Nutana Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 12
Record: 36-14

Skip: Skylar Ackerman
Third: Ashley Thevenot
Second: Taylor Stremick
Lead: Kaylin Skinner
Alternate: Amber Holland
Coach: Patrick Ackerman

At just 22, Sklar Ackerman will make her Scotties debut in Calgary.

Team Ackerman have been far and away the best team in Saskatchewan this year, highlighted by a strong performance at provincial playdowns. In the final they defeated Team Nancy Martin, 10-9 in an extra end.

Ackerman and company won three other times on Tour this season, all in the prairie province.

They definitely have some momentum as they roll into Calgary, but it will be interesting to see how they stack up against the best in Canadian curling at the Scotties, the strongest competition they will face all year.

 

Team Krista McCarville (Northern Ontario)

ContentId(1.2075331): Is this McCarville’s year?

Club: Fort William Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 22
Record: 32-13

Skip: Krista McCarville
Third: Andrea Kelly
Second: Kendra Lilly
Lead: Ashley Sippala
Alternate: Sarah Potts
Coach: Rick Lang

Has Krista McCarville’s time finally come?

The 41-year-old school teacher from Thunder Bay will make her 11th career appearance at the Scotties, including the seventh with teammates Kendra Lilly, Ashley Sippala and Sarah Potts.

McCarville has made the Scotties playoffs all seven of those times, losing in the gold-medal game in 2016 and 2022.

The squad, who have arguably become the most popular team in Canadian women’s curling over the past few seasons, added Scotties veteran Andrea Kelly into the fold this season with the hopes she’ll act as the secret weapon to get them over the hump and onto the top of the podium.

Kelly, a former Canadian junior champ, has skipped New Brunswick at 11 Tournament of Hearts and has already meshed with her new teammates this season after a dominating win at Northern Ontario playdowns.

You can count on McCarville’s crew to be competitive all week long, no matter their opponent. They should be in the mix once again come championship weekend and we’ll have to see if this is finally the year they win the big one.

 

Team Laurie St-Georges (Quebec)

Embedded Image

Club: Club de Curling Glenmore/Club de Curling Laval-sur-le-Lac
Canadian Ranking: 25
Record: 28-15

Skip: Laurie St-Georges
Third: Jamie Sinclair
Second: Emily Riley
Lead: Kelly Middaugh
Alternate: Marie-France Larouche

Quebec’s Team Laurie St-Georges are another rink who will sport a tweaked lineup at this year’s Scotties.

St-Georges, who is headed to her fourth straight Scotties as Quebec’s rep, picked up American-Canadian Jamie Sinclair as well as provincial curling legend Marie-France Larouche to the team for the 2023-24 season.

After some initial doubt, it appears Sinclair, who has represented the United States at two world championships, has gotten the green light to play at this year’s Scotties.

Team St-Georges lost a playoff tiebreaker last year in Kamloops and don’t have an easy route to the top three in Pool A this year, either.

Quebec hasn’t made the playoffs at the Scotties since 2012.

 

Team Jane DiCarlo (Prince Edward Island)

Embedded Image

Club: Crapaud Community Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 88
Record: 6-4

Skip: Jane DiCarlo
Fourth: Veronica Mayne
Second: Sabrina Smith
Lead: Whitney Jenkins

For the first time in five years, the smallest province in Canada will have a new representative at the Scotties.

Suzanne Birt, who has worn PEI colours at 14 Scotties, including the last five, decided to step away from the granite game at the end of last season, leaving the door wide open for somebody else to take the reigns.

Jane DiCarlo was the curler who stepped up and won the provincial title by beating Amanda Power in the final.

DiCarlo calls the game for this team with Veronica Mayne throwing last stones.

 

Team Stacie Curtis (Newfoundland and Labrador)

Embedded Image

Club: RE/MAX Centre
Canadian Ranking: 109
Record: 11-13

Skip: Stacie Curtis
Third: Erica Curtis
Second: Julie Hynes
Lead: Camille Burt
Alternate: Jessica Wiseman
Coach: Eugene Trickett

Stacie Curtis won the Newfoundland and Labrador Scotties for a seventh time in January and will represent The Rock at nationals for the second straight year.

Team Curtis finished 2-6 last year in Kamloops. Curtis’ best Scotties performance came in 2018 when she finished the round robin 4-3 before dropping a tiebreaker to miss the championship pool.

Newfoundland and Labrador are the lowest-ranked team in Pool A.

 

Pool B

Team Rachel Homan (Ontario – CTRS)

Embedded Image

Club: Ottawa Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 1
Record: 38-5

Skip: Rachel Homan
Third: Tracy Fleury
Second: Emma Miskew
Lead: Sarah Wilkes
Alternate: Rachelle Brown
Coach: Don Bartlett

Entering the 10th Scotties Tournament of Hearts of her career, Rachel Homan might be playing the best curling of her career.

Homan’s foursome has been nearly unstoppable this season, winning 38 of their 43 games and making the championship game in all but one of their seven events played. They won the second annual PointsBet Invitational in September – just a few weeks after their skip gave birth to her third child – and have captured the last two Grand Slams, which now marks a record-extending 15 titles for Homan.

ContentId(1.2075332): Miskew says red-hot Team Homan feeling more comfortable in year two together

They’re ranked first in Canada – 73 points better than Team Jennifer Jones at No. 2 – and second in the world behind Switzerland’s Team Silvana Tirinzoni.

After an up-and-down 2022-23 season, highlighted by Tracy Fleury joining the squad and serving as the shot-caller, the rink out of the Ottawa Curling Club have gone back to Homan being responsible for full-skip duties.

With the defined roles, the move has made a difference for the better as seen by Team Homan’s scorching .883 winning percentage.

The 34-year-old Homan won her third Scotties title of her career in 2017, but hasn’t been able to win one since, dropping back-to-back-to-back finals from 2019-2021. They’ve missed the page playoffs the last two seasons but were without Homan at the Thunder Bay Scotties in 2022 due to the Olympics.

Homan and company pre-qualified for this year’s Scotties thanks to their strong ranking on last year’s CRTS.

Despite Team Kerri Einarson coming in as the four-time defending Canadian champions, it’s hard to argue against a well-rested Team Homan being the favourites for this year’s Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary. 

 

Team Jennifer Jones (Manitoba – CTRS)

Embedded Image

Club: St. Vital Curling and Altona Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 2
Record: 35-21

Skip: Jennifer Jones
Third: Karlee Burgess
Second: Emily Zacharias
Lead: Lauren Lenentine
Coach: Glenn Howard

Calgary will be Jennifer Jones' Scotties swan song. 

The six-time Canadian champion announced her plans to retire following this curling season in a social media post on Tuesday.

A finalist in Kamloops, Jones returns to the Scotties Tournament of Hearts for the 19th time in her career this year. 

Jones is already considered as the curling G.O.A.T by many and was voted as Canada's top female curler of all-time in a 2019 poll by TSN. A win in Calgary would only further cement her Hall-of-Fame legacy.  

The 49-year-old Winnipegger, who has represented Canada at two Winter Olympics, will look to win her seventh national women’s curling title which would give her the most of all-time.

Jones hasn’t stood on the top step of the podium at the Scotties since 2018 in Penticton, B.C., when she and her former team dumped Einarson’s old team in the gold-medal game.

Now Jones is in her second year skipping her young team of Manitoba curlers, who are all 25 or younger.

Jones’ squad will have a slightly new look to it as Mackenzie Zacharias announced at the end of last season, to the surprise of many, that she was stepping away from curling for the time being to focus on her career.

With their five-person rink down to four, Team Jones have had some strong results in 2023-24, including an early Grand Slam victory in October. They’ve also made the semi-final stage at the past two Slams against all-world fields.

Like Homan, Jones was able to skip provincials after pre-qualifying.

Rest assured, the veteran Jones will have her team of world junior champions ready to roll come the opening draw in Calgary and will be top contenders once again.

Will it be a storybook ending for Jones at this year's Scotties? 

 

Team Danielle Inglis (Ontario – Provincial Champion)

Embedded Image

Club: Ottawa Hunt and Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 6
Record: 38-20

Skip: Danielle Inglis
Third: Kira Brunton
Second: Calissa Daly
Lead: Cassandra de Groot
Alternate: Kimberly Tuck
Coach: Steve Acorn

With Team Homan absent from the Ontario Scotties, Danielle Inglis took full advantage of the opportunity and is heading to the Tournament of Hearts for the first time in her career.

The 35-year-old has been on the competitive curling circuit for years, having represented Ontario at the Scotties twice as an alternate in 2018 and 2021. She’s also been to many Scotties and Briers as Curling Canada’s lead social media content creator.

Inglis will move from the media bench to the pebbled ice at this year’s Scotties, however, and should be a contender to make the playoffs out of Pool B.

Team Inglis have played a bunch this season, including three bonspiel wins. However, they missed the playoffs at the Shorty Jenkins Classic and Insitu Players Open against some stronger fields. Their extra point pursuit this season have them ranked sixth in Canada and they would have qualified for the Scotties as a CTRS team even if they came up short at provincials.

Consider the rink from the Ottawa Hunt and Curling Club as a dark horse.

 

Team Kate Cameron (Manitoba – CTRS)

Embedded Image

Club: Granite Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 7
Record: 42-30

Skip: Kate Cameron
Third: Meghan Walter
Second: Kelsey Rocque
Lead: Mackenzie Elias
Alternate: Taylor McDonald

Team Kate Cameron’s heavy playing schedule in 2023-24 has earned them a spot in the Tournament of Hearts in their inaugural campaign as a foursome.

After winning their opening six games at the Manitoba Scotties in January, Team Cameron dropped three in a row, including the semis to Team Beth Peterson, 8-4. Still, Cameron and company will be in Calgary after playing in 13 events to place them seventh in Canada.

Team Cameron won a small bonspiel in late August, but haven’t won an event since, missing the playoffs in seven of 12 events. They own a 4-12 record at the Grand Slams against elite fields.

This will be Cameron’s seventh Scotties, but first as a skip after joining forces with half of Meghan Walter’s former team this year. Long-time teammate Taylor McDonald is pregnant and will be replaced by two-time world junior champ Kelsey Rocque.

Cameron, 32, won a silver medal at her first Scotties in 2017, playing vice for Michelle Englot. 

The results haven’t been there so far this season for Team Cameron, so they’ll need to find something in Calgary if they are going to contend for a playoff spot.

 

Team Clancy Grandy (British Columbia – Provincial Champion)

Embedded Image

Club: Vancouver Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 15
Record: 39-29

Skip: Clancy Grandy
Third: Kayla MacMillan
Second: Lindsay Dubue
Lead: Sarah Loken
Coach: Marcel Rocque

Clancy Grandy’s team has also been very busy his season.

The rink out of the Vancouver Curling Club has played nearly 70 games over 13 events since early September.

In their first 11 events, Team Grandy missed the playoffs seven times, including going 2-10 in three Grand Slams. However, they’ve turned it on as of late, winning two straight events, highlighted by defending their provincial title at the BC Scotties with a perfect 9-0 run.

As the hometown team at last year’s Scotties in Kamloops, Team Grandy made the playoffs after defeating Quebec’s Team Laurie St-Georges in a tiebreaker. They would go on to lose to Manitoba’s Team Jennifer Jones in the championship round.

With Team Homan and Team Jones likely locks to make the playoffs out of Pool B, Team Grandy will be one of four or five teams who have a real shot at nabbing the third and final spot.

 

Team Kerry Galusha (Northwest Territories)

Embedded Image

Club: Yellowknife Curling Club
Canadian Ranking: 20
Record: 26-20

Fourth: Jo-Ann Rizzo
Third: Margot Flemming
Second: Sarah Koltun
Skip: Kerry Galusha
Alternate: Shona Barbour
Coach: Kevin Koe

In 1998, a 20-year-old Kerry Galusha (then Kerry Koe) made her Scotties debut in Regina as an alternate for Kelly Kaylo’s Northwest Territories rink. That week they posted a respectable 5-6 record, missing the playoffs by a game.

Three years later, Galusha returned to the Scotties in Sudbury, this time as a skip, and hasn’t looked back since.

Fast forward to 2024, the 46-year-old native of Yellowknife will be making her 21st career appearance at the national championship, including her 17th as a skip.

Galusha, who calls the game and throws lead stones, went 4-4 last season after making the playoffs for the first time in 2022.

This will be the last Scotties for the current version of Team Galusha, and it could also mark Galusha’s swan song after being on the fence for the past couple years.

 

Team Heather Smith (Nova Scotia)

Embedded Image

Club: Halifax Curling Club

Skip: Heather Smith
Fourth: Jill Brothers
Second: Marie Christianson
Lead: Erin Carmody
Alternate: Taylour Stevens
Coach: Colleen Jones

Heather Smith will make her first Scotties appearance since 2014.

The 51-year-old, who captured the bronze medal at the 2011 Scotties in Charlottetown, has represented Nova Scotia at nationals six times, and returns in 2024 after upsetting two-time defending champion Team Christina Black in playdowns.

Team Smith also features the likes of Jill Brothers and Marie Christianson, who have a combined 14 Scotties appearances between them. With six-time Scotties champ Colleen Jones serving as the coach, playing under the “bright lights” of Tournament of Hearts won’t be an issue.

Seeded 14, Team Smith is the third-lowest ranked team in Pool B. Finishing in the top three and advancing to the playoffs isn’t going to be an easy task, but the Bluenosers should still be considered a dark horse given their wealth of experience.

 

Team Melissa Adams (New Brunswick)

Embedded Image

Club: Capital Winter Club
Canadian Ranking: 46
Record: 19-7

Skip: Melissa Adams
Third: Jaclyn Crandall
Second: Molli Ward
Lead: Kendra Lister
Alternate: Kayla Russell
Coach: Alex Robichaud

Melissa Adams is set to make her fifth appearance at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts as New Brunswick’s rep.

Her last appearance came inside the Calgary bubble in 2021 where she posted a 3-5 record and missed the championship pool.

Team Adams won a couple small bonspiels out East earlier this season, including the Jim Sullivan Curling Classic and New Scotland Brewing Women’s Cashspiel.

The 46-year-old won a World Junior in Championship for Canada in 1998.

 

Team Bayly Scoffin (Yukon)

Embedded Image

Club: Whitehorse Curling Club

Skip: Bayly Scoffin
Third: Kerry Foster
Second: Raelyn Helston
Lead: Kimberly Tuor
Alternate: Helen Strong
Coach: Helen Strong

Calgary will mark the Scotties debut for Bayly Scoffin.

Scoffin also competed at the 2022 New Holland U21 Canadian Championship and the 2021 Canadian Mixed Doubles Championship with her father Wade Scoffin.

Bayly is the younger sister to Thomas Scoffin, who is set to represent the territory again at the Montana’s Brier next month in Regina.

Lead Kim Tuor does have Scotties experience as this will be her fourth appearance.

Yukon, skipped by Hailey Birnie, posted a 1-7 record last year in Kamloops.