This year’s Town and Country bonspiel at the Ponoka Curling Club drew a lot of attention and some great games on the final day.
The bonspiel, with nine mens and four ladies rinks competing from Jan. 21 to 25, saw two very close championship games as well as some competitive finals in the other events.
It was the mens A final that came to an exciting, final rock conclusion with the foursome of Steve Pederson, Dale Moench, James Kalin and Dean Larence walking away with the 8-7 victory over the Brian Gunderson rink.
That last end wound up being decided by mere inches as Pederson’s final stone managed to move the Gunderson counter just enough for another Pederson stone to count one for the win,
The shot was so close to being missed there was an audible sigh of relief heard from the gallery once it was made.
It also marked a big comeback, as the rink was down four halfway through the match.
Gunderson opened the scoring with a pair, while Pederson could only get one back with hammer in the second. Gunderson would be forced to take one in the third, but opened up the lead with a steal of two in the fourth.
However, some missed shots and interesting calls ended up giving Pederson the break necessary to get back into the match, putting four spot on the board to tie it up.
The rinks traded deuces in the next two ends to set up the heart-stopping last shot for the victory.
In the B-event, the Kevin Bresee rink captured the B-event by a score of 8-1 in just four ends. Meanwhile, the C-event was taken by the Chad Cissell rink by a count of 8-6.
The rink of Kristen Gordon, Stephanie Tofsrud, Trish Matthews and Moniek Okkema won the A final by scoring multiple points with the hammer and then running the Melody Woods rink out of rocks for the 8-4 win.
Gordon started out on the right foot by scoring a pair in the opening end with last rock. The two rinks traded singles in the next two ends, before Woods tied the game with a deuce of her own in the fourth end.
That’s when the final turned in favour of Gordon in the fifth, making the most out of a pair of mistakes early in the fifth end to put a three on the board.
Woods would not recover from that, replying with just a single, while Gordon salted the game away by scoring two more in the seventh.
Meanwhile, the B-event went to the Michelle Archibald rink by a score of 7-5.