BC teams have special connection at senior nationals

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March 14, 2013, (ISN) – Two BC teams are in Prince Edward Island to compete at the 2013 Canadian Senior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships – and the teams have a special connection.

The event gets underway Saturday, March 16, at the Silver Fox Curling & Yacht Club in Summerside.

A married couple, Karen and Craig Lepine, both got their ticket to PEI after winning gold medals at the 2013 Tim Hortons BC Senior Curling Championships in Trail in February.

The Langley Curling Club curlers are three-time provincial champions in Mixed Curling (1996, 2000 and 2002), but this is the first year the pair have won separate titles in the same year. Craig went to the Brier as BC Men’s champion in 1990 and Karen was Senior Women’s champion in 2003.

Although both Craig and Karen, from Surrey, are curling for the Langley Curling Club, the team members are not all based in Langley. Craig’s team is rounded out by third Stan Walker from Vancouver, second Barry Breton from Surrey and lead Craig McLeod from Richmond. Karen’s team is rounded out by third Lorraine Jeffries (Port Alberni), second Carol Martel (Vernon), and lead Betsy Terpsma (Langley).

Twelve men’s and 12 women’s teams will compete in the national championships, slated for March 16-24. At the conclusion of the round robin on Friday, the first-place teams advance directly to Sunday’s finals while the second and third place teams meet in semifinals on Saturday, following any required tiebreakers.

The winners of the 2013 Canadian Seniors will then represent Canada at the 2014 World Seniors, at a site and date to be announced by the World Curling Federation.

Last year was the first time that all 14 Member Associations of the Canadian Curling Association were given equitable access to the Seniors Championships, which necessitated a pre-event qualifying round amongst the four lowest seeds (win-loss records over the last three years) to determine which two teams of each gender would advance to the main draw.

This year, the four lowest seeds (worst win-loss records from the 2012 championships) will compete in a qualifying round to determine which two teams of each gender advance to the main draw. On the men’s side, Nova Scotia, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut must qualify, while on the women’s side, British Columbia, Northwest Territories and Yukon must qualify. Nunavut is not fielding a women’s team this year. As the host province, Prince Edward Island receives automatic berths into both championships.

The qualifying round takes place on Thursday, March 14, and Friday, March 15, at the Silver Fox Curling & Yacht Club. In men’s, Nova Scotia plays Nunavut while Yukon meets Northwest Territories at 3:30 p.m. The winners then play at 8 p.m. to determine the first qualifier, while the losers also meet in an elimination game. The loser of the first qualifier will then face the winner of the elimination game on Friday at 9 a.m. to determine the second qualifier.

On the women’s side, Northwest Territories plays Yukon at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, with the winner facing British Columbia at 8 p.m. to determine the first qualifier. On Friday at 9 a.m., the loser of the first qualifier meets the loser of the NT/YT game to determine the second qualifier.

Draw results for the 2013 Canadian Seniors will be instantly available at www.curling.ca. For event information, visit http://www.curling.ca/championships/seniors.