The 2022 Canadian Seniors Curling Championships won’t be happening until December, in a location yet to be determined, but at least the NWT knows who it will be sending.

The NWT Seniors Curling Championships wrapped up in Inuvik on Feb. 28 with the men’s and women’s champions crowned. They are Glen Hudy on the men’s side as he defeated Inuvik’s Mel Sittichinli in the final while Sharon Cormier defeated Melba Mitchell of Inuvik in a best-of-five series to win the women’s side.

“Our games weren’t very close, unfortunately,” said Cormier. “But we worked hard up there and we curled really well.”

The third game was almost a walkover of sorts as Mitchell’s outfit wasn’t able to field a full team due to varying circumstances, she added.

To make up for that, an exhibition game happened between Cormier’s rink and that of Inuvik’s Pearl Gillis, who is in Yellowknife this week competing in the Canada Winter Games trials for 2023.

“It was good to get that extra game,” said Cormier. “It gave us some extra time on the ice and it gave them a bit of a warm-up before they left for Yellowknife.”

The men’s side featured three teams with Ed Sattelberger of Yellowknife in the mix with Hudy and Sittichinli. The trio of rinks played a double round-robin with Hudy finishing atop the standings at three wins and one loss, the lone defeat coming at the hands of Sattelberger. The first-place finish meant a bye to the final with Sittichinli and Sattelberger playing the semi-final to determine who would play for the big prize, where Hudy would defeat Sittichinli.

Brian Kelln, who plays third for Hudy’s rink, said it was probably the best the foursome have played all season.

“All of us there were evenly-matched but I think we capitalized better on the opportunities when we had them,” he said. “Glen has great draw weight and he made a lot of shots when we needed them.”

Something Kelln remarked about was the ice and how well it played all weekend.

“The conditions were great,” he said. “About four ft. of curl and it was really fast, about 15 seconds hog-line to hog-line.”

The win in Inuvik was a redemption of sorts for the team, he added.

“We struggled at nationals (last December) and there wasn’t a lot of confidence going in,” he said. “We pulled it together and it was gratifying, I think, for all of us. It’s one thing to lose to the top teams at nationals but not the same when you just aren’t playing well. For me, nationals was probably the worst I’ve ever curled but our A game showed up in Inuvik.”

So with many months to wait until going back to the Canadian championships, both Cormier and Kelln said their respective rinks will do what they can as early as they can next season to try and be in as good a shape as they can be.

“I’m hoping we can get on the ice early,” said Cormier. “Covid caused us to get on the ice late this season it showed because we struggled at nationals. We may look at some spiels outside the territory to get some games in before the ice gets installed (in Yellowknife).”

“We’re going to be better prepared,” said Kelln. “It really sucks to not win a game at nationals so we’ll use the time to get ourselves ready.”

James McCarthy

After being a nomad around North America following my semi-debauched post-secondary days, I put down my roots in Yellowknife in 2006. I’ve been keeping this sports seat warm with NNSL for the better...

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