MacDonald vs. MacDonald

CON GRIWKOWSKY -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 12:19 PM ET

Put it down to fate or coincidence.

Either way, it's difficult to explain the confluence of seemingly unrelated incidents meeting in a relative way in the A Event final of the northern Alberta men's curling playdowns last night at the jam-packed Granite.

Throwing yellow skip rocks out of the Lac la Biche club - Brent MacDonald. Lives in St. Albert.

Throwing red skip rocks for Jamie King's crew - Blake MacDonald. Lives in Sherwood Park.

Current president of the Northern Alberta Curling Association - Orv MacDonald. Father of the aforementioned MacDonald offsprings.

Can you believe there were actually people teasing mom Pat before the game, asking her who she was cheering for.

MacDonald. Brent. Blake. Orv. Pat.

We're not making this up.

After appearing at the 2004 provincials, Brent took last year off before rebuilding.

"When I put this team together,'' said Brent, an 8-5 winner over Jamie King and his little brother, "I wanted to put a team together to be able to compete with Blake's team, the Martins and Ferbeys. It's come together pretty well.''

Barry (Chewy) Chwedoruk stepped back from third to second to make room for Warren Hassall. Lead Brendan Melnyk, from Smoky Lake, is also a new recruit.

"Chewy for mayor,'' said Brent. "I hear Lac la Biche is looking for a mayor right now.''

Hassall, from Lloyminster, is considered the best pure curler who has never appeared at a provincial before.

"That's very nice for him,'' said MacDonald.

"Brendan and him have never been before.

"There are a lot of great rural curlers that never get to go to a provincial. Warren's lost a couple of finals. They've been close before. I really feel good for him.''

The teams have rarely met, other than at the annual Bonnyville spiel, which Blake won this year.

Brent, 38, is nine years older than Blake and usually won the wrestling matches in their Cold Lake home, where Orv was a long-time high school principal.

"He had a weight advantage,'' said Blake. "He outweighs me by 60 pounds.''

Worked that way in last night's game, too. "If that's what it take, then that's what it takes,'' said Brent.

Although Blake managed to steal a pair in the ninth to make it close, a fourth-end steal by Brent when Blake's last draw fell short gave a 4-1 advantage to the Lac la Biche crew. "I'm happy for him,'' said Blake. "We'd like to join him.''

EXTRA ENDS: John Morris won the A qualifier in the southern Alberta playdowns.


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