Portage veterans beaten by an heir

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:07 AM ET

He has already been deemed the heir apparent to the Portage la Prairie area that has been dominated by Don Spriggs for so many years.

And just to accentuate that point, young Ryan Hyde toppled veteran clubmate Doug Jordan from the unbeaten ranks of the MCA's 117th Annual Bonspiel with a 6-4 victory at the Elmwood Curling Club yesterday.

"These guys are all we've got (for the future) so, it's not all bad," a gracious Jordan said in defeat.

Hyde, 23, has already shown he can be a threat on the Manitoba men's scene by qualifying for the Manitoba Curling Tour championship this season.

"Beating Doug is always a challenge," said Hyde. "It's great that we have that calibre a team in our area because it helps us elevate our game."

Hyde is still making the transition into men's curling and has remained at skip while others in his curling shoes have dropped down to play other positions as they get their feet wet.

"We have benefited from playing in the MCT events," said Hyde, who also won the 2002 provincial university curling championship. "Mostly, it just gives you confidence coming out of juniors and going into men's."

But it can be costly.

"If we hadn't qualified in our first event, we may not have played the second two," said Hyde, supported by third Farrol Asham, 27, second Hartley Vanstone, 26 and Ashley Linden, 25.

Hyde stayed in the hunt with the win.

"It is a hard way to get a (Safeway Select) spot, on one leg," said Hyde, now a farm supplement retailer in Portage.

"And we're still alive," said Jordan, who eliminated Valour Road's Dan Kammerlock 8-2 earlier. "We just don't have to play as many games now."

Meanwhile, Steinbach's Garry Barkman beat Wildewood's John Bubbs 8-5 last night to hand him his first loss. Both David Hamblin of Morris and St. Vital's Bill Kuran rebounded from morning losses with victories to keep their Select hopes alive.

Meanwhile, Assiniboine Memorial's Kerry Burtnyk is one of the 12 remaining undefeated teams.

Others at 8-0 included Doug Riach and Andrew Wickman, both of St. Vital, and Pembina's Bill North.


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