Published on December 23, 2013
Mary Myketyn-Driscoll's Truro rink is looking to successfully defend its provincial junior girls curling championship this weekend at Lakeshore Curling Club in Lower Sackville. Members of the team are, from left, coach Jim Burgess, lead Sarah Sears, second Mackenzie Proctor, mate Taylor Clarke and skip Mary Myketyn-Driscoll. Submitted photo
Published on December 23, 2013
Scott Babin is hoping he can get back to the national junior boys championship with his Truro Curling Club team this weekend at the provincial boys championship at Lakeshore Curling Club. Members of the team are, from left, coach Craig Burgess, skip Scott Babin, mate Jonathan Crouse, second Andrew Burgess and lead Alex MacNeil. Submitted photo
TRURO - Conventional wisdom says the only thing tougher than winning one championship is winning a second.
But Mary Myketyn-Driscoll's defending champion Truro rink, which also includes Taylor Clarke, Mackenzie Proctor and Sarah Sears, doesn't plan to follow that theory Friday at the Nova Scotia Junior Curling Championship at Lakeshore Curling Club in Lower Sackville.
"Definitely," Myketyn-Driscoll said. "That's our only goal really."
The eight-team event kicks off Friday and runs until Sunday's final. The winner moves on to the Canadian championship Jan. 18 to 26 in Liverpool. After getting a taste of the national stage last year in Fort McMurray, Alta., the Myketyn-Driscoll foursome wants to battle the country's best once again.
"It was really something you'd remember for a long time," Clarke, a 20-year-old Hilden resident said.
The foursome won't be the only Colchester County curlers at the event. Olivia Dennis is mate to Chester's Micayla Dorey while Hilden's Karlee Burgess throws second stones for Mary Fay, also of Chester.
Also in the field are Brooke DeMone of Lunenburg, Mayflower's Emily Dwyer and Emily Manuel and Chester's Hannah Stevens, while Hayley McCabe will represent the host club.
Although she noted the competition will be tough, Myketyn-Driscoll has had success against each team in the field. Nonetheless, it'll be of the utmost importance for her team to be prepared mentally in order to find success.
"Skillwise we've done all we can do," Myketyn-Driscoll, a 20-year-old Dartmouth resident, said. "From here on it's all mental."
The foursome has been playing well thus far this season, reaching the final at a cashspiel in Moncton, the semifinal of the Oak Island Cashspiel and putting in a solid performance at a tournament in Manitoba.
"So we've been playing well as a team and have been building up all year," Myketyn-Driscoll said.
The girls also desperately want to win a title for coach Jim Burgess in their last year under his tutelage.
"He does so much for us," Clarke said. "It would be nice to win one for him to send him off with."
Meanwhile, on the boys side of the event, Scott Babin will try to make it a clean sweep for Truro. Babin, who won the title and finished third at nationals last year with Stuart Thompson, has now teamed up with Jonathan Crouse, Andrew Burgess and Alex MacNeil to skip a Truro rink.
Not only does Babin want to win provincials, but he wants to do damage at nationals and nab the title he was so close to last February.
"I think our goal is a lot further than provincials," the 20-year-old Halifax resident said. "I think this year, our goal of doing well at nationals is definitely going to help us get past provincials."
They'll also have to go through a field of eight, which also includes Chester's Adam Cocks and Kyle Meisner, Mitchell Cortello of CFB Halifax, Bridgewater's Trevor Crouse, Mayflower's Matthew Manuel, Robert Mayhew of Windsor and Alex Rafuse of Halifax.
The team has looked strong thus far this year and has been in contention in nearly every event it has entered. Babin said that's due to the focus on development the team has put in this fall.
"We have started to practice a lot more before provincials so we can peak at the perfect time to not only do well at provincials but nationals too," Babin said.
That kind of talk and those kinds of expectations are why Crouse said he was happy to move over as skip and welcome Babin and MacNeil with open arms over the summer.
"I was really excited," the 19-year-old Stewiacke resident said. "I think we have a really good team and I think we can do really well."
Babin said it'll take consistent play from himself and his teammates to get the job done.
"It's four days long so you don't have to curl the best game of your life every game you just have to be consistent out there," he said.
On Twitter: @tdnmatt