Valuable experience learned for Ponoka foursome

By Charles Tweed

Zone playoffs in Camrose seemed like a horseshoe for the Ponoka Composite High School curling team — a little thin on each end, fat in the middle and hard all the way through.

The team of lead Courtney Smith, second Nick Clarke, third Kiara Kjenner and skip Paul Maas, lost a close first game to Dr. Folkins Community School from Chauvin.

“We were doing our best to adjust to the ice. Every rink and every sheet is different and I don’t think we struggled we just needed some time to make adjustments,” said Clarke.

From there, the team would rattle off two consecutive victories. First, over Bentley and then St. Augustine — a nail-biter that came down to the last rock.

The back-to-back wins put PCHS in the playoffs in a must-win situation against Irma.

“The game was back and forth the whole way and we played well. Paul tried a tough triple take out in the seventh and it ended up with them counting one and that put us down by three,” said Clarke.

The game finished 7-4 and effectively knocked out the Ponoka squad, but Clarke, who is in Grade 11, believes he can use the experience.

“I think the experience will help me for next year,” said Clarke. “I plan on being back next year and skipping, so it is definitely something that helped.”