Catch the 2017 Under 21 Curling Championships FREE on TitleSportLive.ca
On January 4th, 2017 the Under 21 Ontario Junior Curling Championships will begin at the Russell Curling Club. The winner of this tournament will have the opportunity to play in the National Junior Curling Championships as the representative from Ontario. This is quite an honor for any curler, which is why there is so much importance placed on this tournament.
In 2016, the winning team was skipped by Doug Kee. Doug and his team beat Team Calwell in the Finals by a score of 10-3. However, these teams were much more closely matched than the score depicted. Earlier on in the tournament in round robin play, an extra end was needed to declare a winner. Doug’s team was victorious in this extra end and would eventually go on to win the Championship. TSL was lucky enough to catch up with Doug and ask him a few questions about his experience at last year’s Junior Curling Championships.
We asked Doug, other than winning last year’s tournament, do any other moments stand out for you?
Doug: “In the teams first game of last years’ tournament the team gave up a steal of 5 early in the game but were able to make the come back to win that game in the last end. This was a good confidence booster that our team could make a come back even if we were down.”
Is there a team that you are cheering for at this year’s tournament?
Doug: “The team I’m rooting for is skipped by Matthew Hall. Matt was a teammate of mine last season.”
How did it feel winning the Juniors and what did you and your team do to celebrate?
Doug: “It felt great knowing that I had another opportunity to wear the Ontario crest on my back and compete against the best junior players around the country to be able to represent Canada. Celebrations at the junior level usually don’t occur directly after the competition as it is a very long week for everyone as well as the dry period for all athletes during and 24hr post competition. We had to wait to celebrate until our usual weekly league game at our local club. The big celebration for the team occurred over the summer at our coach’s house.”
Do you have any advice for this year’s competitors?
Doug: “My best advice to all the teams is to be prepared for a long week and that 1 or even 2 losses is not a big deal. Just try and stay relaxed and do your best.”
What is the atmosphere like at the Junior Curling Championships?
Doug: “The atmosphere is quite different at curling provincials than any other sport. The curling community is fairly small so mostly everyone knows everyone. As competitive as everyone is on the ice by the nature of the sport, most people are very friendly off the ice.”
What makes curling fans so unique?
Doug: “Curling fans are quite unique. They are very loud with their cow-bells (one of the favoured noise makers). They can also be as quiet as a crowd of people watching a putt on the 18th green. The difference between these two occurrences is usually just a matter of seconds. Also much like the atmosphere of the athletes most of the fans are very friendly off the ice.”
Doug seemed enthused with Title Sports Live’s involvement in curling saying, “I think the opportunity that Title Sports Live brings to the sport of curling is excellent. The more exposure and coverage of the sport, especially at the junior level, will help grow the sport and bring greater opportunities for all athletes.”
Doug plans on taking some time to focus on his studies at Carleton University as he works toward his bachelor’s degree. While doing so, he will continue to play on Carleton’s curling team. After graduating, Doug plans to get back into the men’s circuit to try and compete at the highest level.
Title Sports Live would like to thank Doug Kee for taking the time to speak with us and we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors. We know Doug will be watching the Junior Curling Championships at TitleSportsLive.ca and we want to make sure that you also Sign up so that you too can watch the action for free!
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