Charley's pride

CON GRIWKOWSKY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 12:55 PM ET

It's going to take a lot more than the loss of some curling memorabilia to dampen Charley Thomas's spirits.

That's because nobody can take away what Thomas accomplished on Sunday in Eveleth, Minnesota.

Thomas, a 20-year-old Edmonton resident, won his second straight world junior curling title as he carved himself a niche in history.

He became only the third Canadian skip to win two world junior titles (after Paul Gowsell and John Morris) and only the second, after Morris in 1998-99, to win back-to-back titles.

DIFFERENT CREW

Last night, Thomas was skipping an entirely different crew at the Saville Centre that beat Rick McKague 9-5 in the Edmonton Super League B Division final.

When he returned here from Minnesota, Thomas found that his SUV had been broken into. Along with his university books, much of his curling memorabilia, including the gold medal he won at this year's Canadian juniors, were missing.

"At the moment, the things I'm missing don't really mean that much to me," said Thomas before he took to the ice last night.

"I'm just so happy after winning the world championship again that it's not going to bother me right now.

"It was such a great accomplishment in my life that I don't want anything to ruin it."

Thomas has shown he has the ability to be the Next Best Thing in the men's ranks.

What he's accomplished over the last calendar year shows this kid will be a hot commodity when he goes to the men's level this fall.

"I put the (junior) team together at the beginning of the season because I knew we would be strong," said Thomas, who cut his curling teeth in Calgary and recruited Calgary-based Brock Virtue and Matthew Ng to join a team that included holdover lead Kyle Reynolds.

"To do again what we did last year was a completely different thing. They handled the pressure well, because there was a lot of pressure on us to at least repeat at provincials."

FELT JEALOUS

Thomas leaves his junior career a winner.

"In a way, I was jealous of Geoff (Walker) and Rollie (Robinson)," said Thomas about his 2006 third and second. "They ended their careers with that win. I had another year. It made me nervous going in this year."

Thomas and his squad won $1,600 last night.

Jamie King walked away with the huge coin, $3,200, when he defended his Super League A Division title against John Climenhaga.


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