Will join forces with Hughes, Reid, Affleck
CHARLOTTETOWN – Summerside native Kathy O’Rourke is returning to competitive curling.
© Rachelle Labrecque/Sault Star
Kathy O’Rourke calls a shot for P.E.I. at the 2010 national Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
After skipping her team to a silver-medal finish at the 2010 national Scotties and finishing in the runner-up spot to the Birt rink in the 2011 P.E.I. Scotties Tournament of Hearts, O’Rourke took last year off from competitive curling. But she is returning this year, and will call the game and throw third stones with a new team consisting of Meaghan Hughes, second stone Jackie Reid and lead Tricia Affleck.
Hughes, who skipped her team to a second-place finish at the 2012 P.E.I. Scotties and is a four-time P.E.I. junior champ, will throw final stones.
They will be one of the teams competing in the season-opening Curl Atlantic championship at the Tantramar Veterans Memorial Civic Centre from Sept. 14 to 17.
P.E.I. will also be represented by the defending-champion Suzanne Birt rink, which has added second stone Sarah Fullerton for the 2012-13 season. Fullerton, who skipped her rink to three consecutive provincial junior titles, has now graduated from the junior ranks.
Fullerton replaces Robyn MacPhee, who is taking time off from curling.
Returning team members are Shelly Bradley at third stone, and lead Leslie MacDougall.
On the men’s side, Eddie MacKenzie moves up to the skip position on the P.E.I. rink that was captained last year by Brett Gallant, and finished as runners-up at the P.E.I. Tankard men’s provincial championship.
Gallant has since moved to St. John’s, N.L., to join the Brad Gushue rink that is not in this event.
Anson Carmody of Summerside moves up to the third-stone role, with Christian Tolusso joining the team at second, and Alex MacFadyen of Summerside returning to the lead spot.
The Curl Atlantic championship is a round-robin event designed to give Atlantic curlers experience playing on arena ice, and features cash prizes of $3,000 for the men’s and women’s winners; $2,000 for the runners-up, and $1,000 for the remaining semifinalists.
There are two pools of six teams in both the men’s and women’s divisions. All round-robin games are eight ends, with the semifinals and finals going 10 ends.
Teams were determined based on performance and points earned last season.