In another exciting version of the Continental Cup, it came down to the final skins games Sunday night for one side to claim the Cup. But the early deficit that Team World was in proved too much to come back from.
In front of a full house Sunday night in Penticton, British Columbia reigning World Champion Glenn Howard would clinch the cup with a routine hit to capture the three point skin. It put Team North America over the 30.5 point threshold needed to win.
His celebration was even more entertaining as he took his older brother Russ’ famous gunshot but then finished the celebration by holstering his weapons to go celebrate with his team.
“I’m just ecstatic,” said Team North America skip Glenn Howard. “We had a terrific game, curling wise, and getting along-wise we had so many great times. You feel part of a bigger team, 24 players instead of just four and it’s that what’s more satisfying, playing for a bigger team.”
Heading in to the 9th edition of the Continental Cup, there were a few questions for two Canadian skips making their return to the ice. Kevin Martin was off the ice for almost a month of competitive action while recovering from hernia surgery. He showed no problem returning to form as his team was 3-0 in team play while winning a singles matchup and skipping a mixed team to victory in skins play.
Jennifer Jones, was making her 2012/2013 curling season debut in B.C. returning after the birth of her first child, Isabella Ann, in November. This was a good way for the Jones rink to build toward their provincial playdowns at the end of January while having some fun with Team North America.
“It was so fun to win today; I pretty much could tell you every shot that was played on the other sheets,” said Jones. “It was really exciting to watch, and when Glenn made that shot, it was crazy, it was super fun.
Jones and her team was successful like Team Martin winning 2 team games, tying one, winning her team skins game while losing in their singles matchup. However, the highlight of the week might have been seeing Jones team up with boyfriend Brent Laing. It was entertaining to watch as they beat Team World’s Torger Nergård and Carmen Küng 7-5. After the game, Jennifer told the media how smart Brent is as a player.
“He’s obviously super smart so he was really helping me out; he played outstanding. Absolutely, he took directions well. Like I told you, he’s smart.” said, Jones.
Jones wins came against some of the world’s best women’s teams in reigning World Champion Mirjam Ott of Switzerland, world Silver Medallist Margaretha Sigfridsson of Sweden and runner-up at the 2012 European Championship, Scotland’s Eve Muirhead.
Both Jones and Martin along with the rest of Team North America team members won the $52,000 for winning the Continental Cup. Along with that, Team North America earned an extra $13,000 for winning the bonus money for winning the most points from the final three skins games on Sunday night.
Next year will be the 10th anniversary of the Continental Cup and for the first time it will head outside of Canada to test the waters under the bright lights of Las Vegas, Nevada. It will be staged Jan. 16 to 19, 2014, at the Orleans Arena.
Let me know what you think about this event going to Las Vegas next year by email or twitter. Coming up this week is the anticipated Dominion All-Star Curling Skins Game. Tune into TSN Thursday night for the live draft of teams and then Saturday and Sunday for the Skins Games.