After a series of games beginning Friday night, it all came down to a single rock in the Fort Rupert Curling Club Mixed Bonspiel Sunday.
In the A final, Mike McCulley’s foursome faced off against Colin Hunko and his team, both sides holding an unbeaten streak for the weekend.
Hunko claimed first blood, scoring one on the first end, but McCulley took the next three to lead 5-1 at the midway point.
Hunko responded to take the next two ends with McCulley claiming the penultimate end, setting the scene for a dramatic finale, McCulley ahead 6-3 and having the hammer in the final end.
The sixth end was pivotal, Hunko having three in scoring positions before McCulley’s hammer cut this count to one.
McCully began the final end by trying to keep the house clear and pick off Hunko’s draws, but Hunko was able to sandwich one of McCulley’s yellow stones, holding one of his reds in a scoring position.
An unfortunate ricochet off a clearance attempt gave Hunko a glimmer of hope on his last stone, after McCulley’s stone contrived to squeeze his own stone out of the house leaving Hunko a red on the button and another on the eight to the right.
He drew his last to the eight on the opposite side, leaving McCulley with the hammer having to clear one to win. The skip composed himself before proving up to the task.
Hunko shrugged off the loss. “It was a dramatic finish,” he said. “Down to the last shot. That made it look closer than it was,” he joked.
McCulley admitted, “I was a little nervous on that last shot. I didn’t think I’d actually have to throw the last one.”
“It’s just fun to get out and play — especially when you’re playing your friends,” he added.
McCulley was joined by Roslyn Jensen, Doug McCorquodale and Laina Hunko — wife of his competition. Colin’s team comprised of Jamie Woodford, Harry Pfrimmer and Colleen Broekhuizen.
On the next sheet over, the B final was even closer as John Maday played Rob Paterson.
Paterson shot into the lead, scoring four on the first end, but Maday fought back to level in the third. Another monster end put Paterson four ahead again but Maday pulled back once more to go into the final end three behind.
A solid end saw Maday claim the three needed with the hammer to tie it up and force a mini-end decider.
A draw to the button by Maday’s second outscored Paterson’s lead and second at the top of the house, while Maday’s lead and third guarded the front of the house. While Paterson’s third was able to oust one of the guards, the skip was unable to clear out the scoring rock on the hammer, so Maday earned the win.
In the ‘C’ final, Hank Bood took the win over Bob Gray in six ends.