Farnell headed to Ontario Scotties

EMMA TAYLOR, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:35 PM ET

GANANOQUE - Two former Queen's University curlers earned a berth in the Ontario Scotties Tournament of Hearts on Sunday at the Gananoque Curling Club.

Skip Lisa Farnell, a former Queen's student, led her rink to a 7-1 win over former Kingston curler Cathy Auld of the Mississaugua Golf and Country Club in the A side final of a 16-team regional championship.

Farnell, second Kim Brown, also a former Queen's student, third Erin Morrissey and lead Ainsley Galbraith represent the Loonie Curling Club, a one-sheet club in cottage country — about 4 km from Chaffey's Locks and Benson Lake and 60 km north of Kingston. The team is coached by Dave Farnell, Lisa's father.

“It’s a tough field and the only way you can get through is playing well the whole time and I think we did that,” Lisa Farnell, 24, said after the victory, which sends the rink to the Ontario Scotties, Jan. 24 to 30 in Thornhill.

“There’s a lot of really good teams here, so it can be anybody's game. If anyone is off their game, somebody will pounce on you.”

Farnell scored three in the third to take control of the game. The game concluded after seven ends.

Last year, the team won the B side to advance to provincials.

Farnell beat Debra Karbashewski of Ottawa, Lauren Mann of Rideau and favourite Rachel Homan of Ottawa to reach the A final.

“We made it last year to the B Side so we are very happy to have improved over the year and make it to the A Side,” Morrissey said. “This will be our second provincial as a team, so we are really excited to go back and hopefully improve on our record from last time,” she said.

Farnell won four games at the provincial event last year, but did not advance to the playoffs. The rink formed three years ago.

Auld, third Janet Murphy, second Melissa Foster, and lead Mary Childers, coached by Yvonne Smith, played hard but proved to be no match for Farnell.

“I think we were on the wrong side of the inch and they were on the right side of the inch,” Auld said. “It wasn’t the game that we hoped to have out there but that’s OK,” said Auld, who has been curling for 31 years.

Gananoque Curling Club manager Jayne Curtis said hosting the event gives a lot of exposure to the curling club.

“This is not only good for the curling club but for the town of Gananoque,” Curtis said. “People don’t realize how much curling brings to the economy. These players have been here for three days eating at restaurants, filling up at the gas stations and staying in the hotels, so it’s very important for the town, too.”

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It was a big weekend for the little Loonie Curling Club.

Owner/operator Alex McKinney watched Farnell win in Gananoque and also received good news from Cornwall.

There, Loonie curler Greg Balsdon won the A side of an Ontario regional by beating Chris Gardner of Renfrew, sending the Loonie squad to the Ontario Tankard from Feb. 7 to 13 in Grimsby.

Balsdon's rink includes Lisa Farnell's brother, Jamie.

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Mathew Camm's Ottawa rink won the Pepsi Ontario junior men's championship on Sunday in Sarnia.

The rink, coached by Napanee's Will Hamilton, went undefeated at the event, clinching the crown with a 7-5 win over Michael Bryson's Annandale rink in the final.

Bryson's rink included Queen's University student/Cataraqui Golf and Country Club member Wesley Forget.

Camm's rink advances to the Canadian Juniors from Jan. 29 to Feb. 5 in Calgary.

The 2012 Canadian Juniors are in Napanee.

In the Ontario women's junior final, Clancy Grandy of the Kitchener-Waterloo Granite Club defeated fellow KW member Jasmin Thurston 6-5.


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