Matthew Drewitz bid farewell to the 2021-22 curling season with a hit-and-stick shot, and a national championship he didn’t fully expect.
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Drewitz’s Nutana Curling Club squad won the Canadian Under-18 Curling Championship this weekend, beating Nova Scotia’s Nick Mosher 5-4 in the championship final. They outlasted a 21-team field while winning their first Canadian crown.
“We knew we had a chance, but I thought personally it was a bit unlikely,” says Drewitz, whose team included third Michael Hom, second Carter Parenteau, lead Jared Tessier and coach Dale Neufeld. “My expectations were to just make the playoffs, so we were really excited to win it all.”
The Drewitz squad went 5-1 in round-robin play, and then claimed three straight victories in the championship round. The event was capped off with the skip in the hack, stone in hand, contemplating a hit to win the national title.
“I was just trying to calm myself down and not think too much about the outcome — just focus on the shot,” said the 18-year-old Drewitz, who was playing in his first national championship. “(Shooting for a national title) is always going to be in the back of your head, but I try to ignore that fact as much as I can.”
The title was a long time in coming, given the COVID-19 backdrop.
The event was cancelled in both 2020 and 2021. It was postponed in 2022, then moved from Timmins, Ont. to Oakville. And from there, the assembled teams could finally play for a national championship.
“It was a really cool feeling, and a dream come true,” Drewitz said.
On the girl’s side, Alberta’s Myla Plett beat provincial rival Claire Booth 5-1 to earn the title.
Drewitz’s foursome earned the national trip by winning provincials in Humboldt this past December.
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