Skip Chris Parkinson, second Henry Holland and lead Graham Lee (all from Comox) and third Jackson Nowak from Qualicum Beach show off their curling silver medals they won at the B.C. Winter Games in Fort St. James with coach Bob Franklin and Robert Lee. (Submitted photo)

Shantz finishes second, happy for B.C. curling champ

Michayluk finally a victor at provincial women’s senior bonspiel

Parksville’s Penny Shantz finished second at the B.C. Senior Women’s Curling Championships in Vernon on Sunday.

And while second place was not the goal, Shantz was nonetheless pleased for the victor.

That’s because this year’s winner is a friend, Donna Mychaluk from Royal City, New Westminster, who in the last five years has finished a heartbreaking second in this championships. Team Mychaluk beat the Shantz rink 6-5.

“She’s been a silver medalist five times and four of those times were against me,” said Shantz, a four-time winner of this event. “So when I stood up there I said, ‘nobody deserves this more than you. It’s your turn.’”

Mychaluk, backed by third Victoria Murphy, second Shirley Wong and Lead Janet Suter, bested Shantz’s crew of third Colleen Robson, second Debbie Erdos, lead Teri Palynchuk and fifth player Susan Hamilton in a barn-burner.

Shantz gave up three rocks in the early stages had to claw back late in the game to tie it up and force the extra end.

But Mychaluk made an amazing shot that sealed the win, her first ever.

READ MORE: Parksville club foursome set to rock at provincial curling championships

Mychaluk almost didn’t compete at the senior provincial championships because she didn’t have a team for the playdowns, said Shantz, who learned about it after her team beat Mychaluk at the 55+ BC Games in Kelowna last September.

Shantz said Mychaluk’s teammates at the 55+ games were already recruited to play for another team leaving her without a crew.

At the 55+ games, Shantz had Nanoose Bay curlers Suter and Wong on her winning team. She said she couldn’t play with Suter and Wong again at the provincial senior championship playdowns as she already have another crew committed to play.

Suter and Wong, who are members of the Parksville Curling Club, went on to team-up with Mychaluk and they ended up winning it.

“In losing that game, I was happy for Donna from Royal City and her third because of all the other stuff, but I was super happy too for Shirley and Janet too because, of course, we’re close friends and we’re also going to be competing at the 55+ Canada Games.”

The men’s final was anticlimactic as defending champ Wes Craig and his Duncan/Nanaimo rink of third Steve Waatainen, second Keith Clarke and lead Craig Burton scored four in the second end, then added steals of one point in the next three ends for a 7-1, six-end victory over the Kelowna/Comox Valley quartet of skip Steve Wright, third Ron Schmidt, second Normand Cote and lead Shaun Everest.

It’s the fifth provincial senior crown for Craig who, along with Mychaluk, will represent B.C. at the Canadian championships next month in Portage la Prairie, Man.

• At the BC Winter Games that was held in Fort St. John, Jackson Nowak of Qualicum Beach, who plays third for the team skipped by Chris Parkinson earned a silver medal along with second Hery Halland and lead Graham Lee in the boys U16 curling finals.

The final was a nail-biter as Team Parkinson battled back from an 8-3 deficit to tie the game 9-9 to force an extra end against the Lower Mainland foursome of Team Fei, who ended up winning the gold.

The team were coach by Bob Franklin of Nanaimo and Robert Lee of Comox.

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

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