Team Morris win the 2017 belairdirect BC Men’s Curling Championship

Dean Joanisse

) Vernon’s Jim Cotter and Kelowna’s Rick Sawatsky will tie the BC record for most trips to the Brier with their team clinching the title in Abbotsford today.


Team Morris, rounded out by 2010 Olympic Champion John Morris, who was calling the shots, and second Tyrel Griffith, earned the chance to represent BC at the 2017 Tim Hortons Brier in St. John’s Newfoundland.


Cotter and Sawatsky, who first won a BC title in 2008, now have seven purple hearts. They are now tied with Bernie Sparkes, of Vancouver, and Reg and Roy Stone, of Trail, for the most BC men’s titles.


The 2017 belairdirect BC Men’s Curling Championship, Presented by Fountain Tire, started on Wednesday at Abbotsford Curling Club and wrapped up this evening.


Sawatsky said he was honoured to be in the same company as Bernie Sparkes. “That’s someone we really looked up to growing up as kids so it’s really cool to be in the same company as him.”


Cotter said although he had been to the Brier six times, he hadn’t accomplished everything he wanted. “It was always my goal to go to the Brier and win the Brier, so that will be our focus this year.”


Morris said: “We’re going to enjoy tonight and then get back into training. We’re looking forward to St John’s, we want to bring back a title for BC.”


In the final, steals in the third, sixth and seventh ends helped Team Morris on the way to a 6-3 win over the Golden Ears Winter Club rink of Dean Joanisse. Joanisse, a former Canadian junior champion, was playing with third Paul Cseke, of Victoria, as well as the Vancouver duo of Jay Wakefield and John Cullen.


Victoria’s Team Jackson were awarded the bronze medals after an entertaining semi final against Team Joanisse, which went into the extra end.  Skip Glen Jackson was too heavy with his final rock, which sailed through the house, leaving a score of four for Joanisse. The final score was 11-7. Team Jackson was rounded out by third Andrew Komlodi, second Corey Chester and lead Joel Cave, all from Victoria.