Byes announced for Alberta curling championship

Kevin Koe may have skipped his team to a 2014 Brier title, but that meant little when it came time to earn a bye into the Alberta men’s curling championship.

While his 2014 squad will be under the direction of John Morris as Team Canada at the Calgary 2015 Brier, Koe’s decision to swap out his supporting cast means he’ll have to work his way back to the big show.

Heck, he’s not even returning to the 2015 Boston Pizza Cup at Wainwright under the defending champion banner.

With the retirement of runner-up Kevin Martin this season, the defending champion berth for the Feb. 4-8 event had previously been awarded to 2012 world junior champ Brendan Bottcher on the basis of April CTRS points.

In a rebuilding year for Alberta men’s curling, Koe managed to get his 2015 bye as Alberta’s top December CTRS team.

Koe, whose supporting cast includes Martin’s former front end players Ben Hebert and Marc Kennedy, is currently ranked No. 7 on the CTRS list. Bottcher comes in with a No. 12 ranking, second-best among Alberta-based teams this season.

Also nailing down Alberta Tour byes, announced by the Alberta Curling Federation on Tuesday, are rinks skipped by Bottcher’s former third Mick Lizmore of the Saville Centre and former Alberta junior champ Aaron Sluchinski of Airdrie.

The women’s byes, for the Jan. 21-25 Alberta Scotties at Lacombe, are a bit more clear-cut.

Defending Alberta champ Val Sweeting, fresh off her win at the Canada Cup in Camrose, will get a chance to warm up for this year’s Alberta Scotties at the Continental Cup in Calgary.

Heather Nedohin lost the Canada Cup semi to Sweeting and comes in as Alberta’s top December CTRS team. Nedohin’s performance in Camrose moved her up three spots on the CTRS list to No. 6.

Nedohin’s announced lineup includes Jocelyn Peterman, who subbed in for regular second Jessica Mair at the Canada Cup.

Chelsea Carey, who skipped Manitoba in the 2014 Scotties, earned an Alberta Tour spot -— along with Casey Schedegger of Lethbridge.

Carey currently sits at No. 10 on the CTRS list, meaning this year’s Alberta Scotties will feature three Top 10 Canadian women’s teams.

con.griwkowsky@sunmedia.ca

 

Alberta Boston Pizza Cup

Feb. 4-8 at Wainwright

Defending champion: Brendan Bottcher, Tom Appelman, Bradley Thiessen, Karrick Martin.

December CTRS: Kevin Koe, Marc Kennedy, Brent Laing, Ben Hebert.

Alberta Tour: Mick Lizmore, Nathan Connolly, Parker Konschuk, Carter Lautner.

Alberta Tour: Aaron Sluchinski, Justin Sluchinski, Dylan Webster, Eric Richard.

 

Alberta Scotties

Jan. 21-25 at Lacombe

Defending champion: Val Sweeting, Lori Olson-Johns, Dana Ferguson, Rachelle Brown.

December CTRS: Heather Nedohin, Amy Nixon, Jocelyn Peterman, Laine Peters.

Alberta Tour: Chelsea Carey, Laura Crocker, Taylor McDonald, Jen Gates.

Alberta Tour: Casey Scheidegger, Cary-Anne McTaggert, Jessie Schedegger, Brittany Tran.​

 

 

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