Sticks ’N’ Stones skip Tracy Boyd of Langley prepared to throw a rock during the Canadian Open World wheelchair bonspiel held in Richmond in November. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Langley gearing up for B.C.’s wheelchair championships

Langley Curling Centre will host the provincials from Jan. 12 to 14 in Brookswood.

Just a few weeks after Langley Curling Centre hosted the BC junior championships – where Langley’s own Team Tardi cinched the men’s title – staff and volunteers at the rink are now gearing up for another provincial competition.

This time, they’re preparing for the wheelchair provincial championships being held Jan. 12 to 14.

Among the three B.C. teams qualified to participate, there is again one team from Langley.

Sticks ’N’ Stones, who earn bronze in last year’s competition, will start by playing two games on their home ice on Saturday, Jan. 13, at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Sticks ’N’ Stones is made up of Zosia Ettenberg, Tracy Boyd, and Aaron Gelowitz, as well as Surrey’s Mildred Thomas.

They’ll compete against Team Duddy, representing Quesnel Curling Centre, and Team Neighbour – representing Richmond Curling Centre.

“The provincial promise to be fun and exciting, for sure. It always is,” said Boyd, skip for the Sticks ’N’ Stones.

“But what makes this competition so special is that it’s being hosted here in Langley, on our home ice,” Boyd added.

Since there is no sweeping allowed in wheelchair competition, she said the skill and precision these players bring to the game is “significant.”

“Trust me, it makes for some great curling, and I can only hope that spectators and even potential future players will come out and watch some of the action,” said Boyd, who took up the sport only two years ago.

“After ending up in a wheelchair, this sport has given me renewed meaning,” she said. “It has challenged me both physically and mentally, and introduced me to some great human beings.”

Anyone in Langley interested in participating in wheelchair curling, be it competitive or league play, is encouraged to call Langley Curling Centre’s manager Robyn Parkes at 604-530-8218.

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Women’s play

Meanwhile, a Langley woman is in Victoria this week playing in the 2018 Scotties BC Women’s Curling Championships.

Langley’s Grace MacInnes is playing third for the New Westminster-based Team Gushulak.

They’re competing against seven other teams at the Victoria Curling Club between Jan. 2 and 7. They’re competing for the chance to represent B.C. at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts Canadian Women’s Curling Championship in Penticton.

As of today (Friday), Team Gushulak is tied for top spot with five wins and one loss.

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