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Wiseman, Smith down Gushues in Mixed Doubles

(Above)Jess Wiseman and Greg Smith triumphed over (Below) Brad Gushue and Marissa Gushue to claim the Mixed Doubles Curling Championship. Submitted by Dr. Dave Thomas

By Jaymie White Local Journalism Initiative Reporter PORT AUX BASQUES — The Gateway Curling Club held the MixedDoubles  Championship beginning on Wednesday, Jan. 3. Special guest and Olympic champion Brad Gushue added even more excitement to an already popular event. “Mixed doubles is curling with two people, the man and a woman, or I should say male and female, because it’s all ages, and we have seven teams competing here. Five from St. John’s, one from our host club here at Gateway, and Keith Ryan came down from Labrador city and joined with Sue Curtis from Corner Brook to put it into seven teams,” said Dr. Dave Thomas, who is the club’s President. “It started on Wednesday evening, or Wednesday afternoon, actually, and we’ll end this evening.” As usual, the tournament was enjoyed by all who attended, whether they were competing or spectating. “It was really good this morning. These games really mattered. So we had myself and my daughter, Sarah, we played, Neary and Hancock. That’s Emily Neary and Dylan Hancock, and that was the game to get into the playoffs. That was for third place because the top three teams move ahead,” said Thomas. “Unfortunately, we lost that one on the last shot, so we finished fourth, and Dylan and Emily will go forward into the playoffs in the first. The second playoff game going in this morning is Gushue with Gushue. That’s Brad and his daughter, Marissa. Marissa is only twelve and played Greg Smith and Jess Wiseman. Both Greg and Jess have been to Scotties and Briers in the past, and Gushue and Gushue won on the last shot. So they’re going to go to the final, straight to the final. Gushue and Gushue, Greg Smith, Jess Wiseman, Dylan Hancock, and Emily Neary will play off for the semifinal, and the winner of that will go play Brad and Marissa in the final at 7:00 p.m.” The tournament was held at the Bruce II Sports Centre, home of the Gateway Curling Club. “We always host NLCA, Newfoundland and Labrador Curling Association events, but this is definitely the biggest event we’ve hosted, and the Gushue factor has definitely played a role in all the attendance here,” said Thomas. “We’ve hosted mixed doubles once before. We hosted mixed and masters and seniors before, but it was our turn to host mixed doubles again, and it just so happened that Brad wanted to play with Marissa or Marissa wanted to play with Brad. So they entered and created quite a buzz. We were assigned this tournament in June and we found out around August or September that they had interest in coming, and they confirmed it in December.” There are lots of prizes to be won by the curlers. “There’s lots of stuff and there’s a banner. You get to wear the Newfoundland colors at the Nationals in Fredericton later this year,and you get to keep a banner in your home,” said Thomas. “But they’re all great curlers. All three teams are excellent. They’ll all be great representatives for Newfoundland if they win. I know Gushue and Gushue certainly have a lot of fans here, but the other teams are absolutely great as well.” The tournament was won by Jess Wiseman and Greg Smith

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