A team of Langley boys are fighting to maintain their tw0-time championship title in the Prairies this week. But to onlookers, they’re victories, thus far, look effortless.
Team B.C., skipped by Tyler Tardi, is competing in the New Holland Canadian Juniors in Prince Albert, Sask. this week, and after moving onto the second level of competition today (Wednesday), they’re sitting with a total seven wins and no losses.
Team BC is made up of Tyler Tardi (a Cloverdale skip who plays out of the Langley Curling Centre), Sterling Middleton (the third who hails from Fort. St. John, and curls out of New Westminster), Matthew Hall (second, who lives in Cloverdale but also plays out of the Langley rink), and Alex Horvath (the lead who plays out of Victoria).
These boys are hoping to defend a national title, which they’ve held for the past two year.
“We had a good game against a solid team,” Tardi said, following today’s game where they cruised to a 6-2 victory over Northern Ontario’s Tanner Horgan.
”A few more games away from making our goal of making playoffs,” Tardi added, noted the team has been playing very well together.
On paper, there’s no doubt this team is destined for success, according to Curling Canada.
Each player comes with a laundry list of curling accomplishments including Canadian championships, world championships, and Youth Olympics Games gold medals – to name a few.
Though it’s a very similar line-up to past championship teams, Hall – originally from Ontario – is a welcome new addition to the squad, Tardi citing the team’s chemistry as the key to their success this week.
“It’s our team dynamics,” Tardi elaborated. “We’re having a lot of fun out here. We’re staying upbeat and that’s been a big part of it.”
Hall couldn’t agree more, and says that it shows in the team’s performance this week.
“We’ve really hit our stride,” said Hall. “We’ve been able to go out there and perform well in the first couple ends and get on top of our competition. We’re firing on all cylinders and it feels good.”
Tardi and company finished off the first round of play with a 9-6 win over Alberta’s Desmond Young yesterday.
Now, preparing for game two of the championship pool, Team BC will play an early morning game Thursday against Manitoba, a team sitting with five wins and two losses. That will be followed at lunch-time game Thursday against Quebec, and another early morning game Friday, against Nova Scotia.
Tardi and his team are the only men’s team at the junior nationals that is sitting with seven wins and no losses. Their nearest competitor in the standings is Saskatchewan at 6-1.
The semifinals are set for Saturday and the finals are on Sunday. The same games also will be streamed live in the U.S. on ESPN3.CLICK HERE for streaming and broadcast information.
The winning teams will represent Canada at the 2019World Junior Championships, running Feb. 16 to 23 , in Liverpool, N.S.
People can find all the scores and standings by linking to the scoreboard on the event website, at:www.curling.ca/2019juniors.